13th Jul 2018

Retirees spending less than the Age Pension: report

Retirees spending less than the Age Pension: report
Leon Della Bosca

Australian retirees are spending less than the Age Pension each year, even though they can afford to spend more, according to an analysis of more than 300,000 retirees by an Australian financial firm.

The research found that more than half of those surveyed spend less than the equivalent Age Pension income.

Even those who are receiving a part-Age Pension or who are entirely self-funded are also being quite frugal with their funds.

Jeff Gebler, senior consultant at actuaries firm Milliman, says it’s not just the fear of running out of money before they die that drives such frugality, it’s more a case of covering immediate costs or the possibility of other unexpected expenses in the short term.



“Covering unexpected expenses like future medical bills and residential aged care also worries them, and they are reluctant to spend their superannuation too quickly. The result is that many retirees are holding money back for future years when they will never spend it,” said Mr Gebler.

Even many retirees who treat the Age Pension as a safety net probably won’t spend it all, preferring to save it instead.

“Rationally, they should have no need to self-insure by keeping part of their Age Pension payment. If your only source of income is the Age Pension, it’s a guaranteed, inflation-linked income stream. They are protected from inflation and investment risk,” said Mr Gebler.

The data is raising “as many questions as answers” about the motivations behind retiree spending, prompting further queries about the efficacy of proposed comprehensive income products for retirement (CIPRs), plans to boost compulsory super contributions to provide a target of 70 per cent of income replacement in retirement, and the Government’s downsizing scheme.

Mr Gebler says that a deeper understanding of the motivations driving retiree behaviour is required before creating further policy.

“We’re only really scratching the surface in understanding what motivates people. Everyone is going to have different spending patterns, depending on whether they own their house or rent, their health, their needs,” says Mr Gebler.

“Retirees overestimate some expenses and underestimate others, and the likelihood of those expenses, because they have different perceptions of their needs and the risks they face; we see this spending data that surprises us.”

Nick Callil, head of retirement income solutions at Willis Towers Watson Australia, has his own ideas about what he calls the “cohort effect”.

“If we’re saying that spending declines as people get older because, say, people of 80 aren’t doing around-the-world trips, is that a cohort effect? Do today’s 80-year-olds have less money and so they’re going to spend naturally less anyhow because they’ve got naturally less to live on?” said Mr Callil.

“I think there’s an argument for the system to be based on expectations of a step-down spending pattern, in real terms, as people get older.”

YourLifeChoices’ own research conducted for the Retirement Affordability Index, also presents convincing arguments for how retirement spending may change with age.

While the findings of the Milliman research may be surprising to some, it may also provide an insight as to how retirees will utilise the Government’s new downsizing scheme which came into effect on 1 July 2018.

Some research suggests that about 74 per cent of retirees own their homes outright and, while they could sell the home and have more money for retirement, many are unlikely to do so due to a strong attachment to the family home, or to ensure that their children have some form of inheritance that isn’t necessarily ‘money’.

“Surveys of retirees suggest there isn’t really a strong preference for leaving money to their children, but then you see a revealed preference that suggests otherwise. It’s very common for the house to be left to the kids – people say one thing and they do something else,” said Mr Gebler.

He thinks the Government and finance sector may be “only just starting to understand that people’s reasons for not downsizing might not be financial.”

“People are driven by emotional or other decisions,” he said

Do you agree with these findings? Do you spend less than the Age Pension? Or do you regularly run out of money, with no recourse?


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COMMENTS

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sunnyOz
13th Jul 2018
10:33am
Spending less because no-one knows what damn changes the Govt will come up with that will make it harder for retirees on the pension to manage! They are not stashing it away to leave to kids, but stashing it away for important things like medical, transport, electricity bills, cuts the govt will invariably make.
MICK
13th Jul 2018
1:48pm
Yes, people are worried. Retirees have been under constant attack from the current lot with more to come should they be put back into office.
Robbo
13th Jul 2018
4:09pm
You wouldn't want Shorten and his mob in as in about two years time all pensioners will be on cards only as some are now on restricted spending and at the end of his 3 years you will be on basic food stamps. So be very careful of who you vote for pensioners at this stage are getting a good screw.
MICK
13th Jul 2018
4:17pm
Typical government hate comment.
Shorten has NEVER come after retirees with a vengeance. The Turnbull government has. End of story.
Robbo
13th Jul 2018
4:23pm
Be frightened Mick be very frightened your pension might go if your mate Shorten gets in.
George
13th Jul 2018
4:24pm
You are spot on, sunnyOz, this stupid researcher doesn't understand these basic facts! In fact he even overlooks his own findings.

He stupidly says "..they should have no need to self-insure by keeping part of their Age Pension payment", after having noted:

"It’s more a case of covering immediate costs or the possibility of other unexpected expenses in the short term.
Covering unexpected expenses like future medical bills and residential aged care also worries them, and they are reluctant to spend their superannuation too quickly.".

Clearly, it is yet another agency trying to justify lower pensions (direction of the current Liberal Govt as they already attacked pensioners in Jan 2017), as well as to promote their CIPR products which are meant to boost their incomes through low-return products at the expense of retirees.
YLC needs to start calling out these self-interested so-called researchers who also misinterpret their own findings to suit themselves.
HS
13th Jul 2018
4:34pm
You could read between the lines that someone in a think tank has voyeuristic fascination with the age pension system.
The data is raising “as many questions as answers” about the motivations behind retiree spending, prompting further queries about the efficacy of proposed comprehensive income products for retirement (CIPRs)...
Mr Gebler says that a deeper understanding of the motivations driving retiree behaviour is required before creating further policy....
“I think there’s an argument for the system to be based on expectations of a step-down spending pattern, in real terms, as people get older.”
--Ah, yes, of course...a further new policy!!!...to create a step-down pension payment system based on age and spending expectations?
Here we go again, another punitive assault against the age pension, how to pay them less. They will never give up giving undeserved mental stress to old age pensioners just because the old age pensioners are an easy target to torture to death!
MICK
13th Jul 2018
4:36pm
Robbo - your comment puts you exactly where you are. As a right wing tool.
I don't get a pension as we sacrificed and saved. Look up the meanings of those words. I wish!
HS
13th Jul 2018
5:08pm
Mick. your right but it would not be any different under socialism or communism tools!
MICK
13th Jul 2018
5:25pm
I take your point HS but I cannot remember any Labor government in the past 50 years grinding retirees into the dust.
Both sides of politics have flogged off the nation and sold us out and now we have to pay for what was in the past owned by the state. That aside the current batch are not finished with average retirees yet. If my fellow countrymen are duped into putting them back in it will be game on from day 1.
Personally this is all unlikely to affect my family because we have prepared. Others will not be so fortunate.
HS
13th Jul 2018
6:30pm
Mick, you are right about Labor not grinding retirees but they have played politics in delaying or not supporting motion to increase age pension

https://theyvoteforyou.org.au/people

Among Labor moderate non-supporters were Shorten-Plibersek-Swan-Bowen and a strong non-supporter was...Wong!...

"Both sides of politics have flogged off the nation and sold us out"

You betcha! But, we can't call it treason can we? Perhaps, the great betrayal?
Robbo
13th Jul 2018
9:12pm
Mick all Labour supporters get free government money that's why you vote for them line up for your hamper.
MICK
13th Jul 2018
10:42pm
What else would one expect a government sponsored troll say?

Did you hear the news about the corrupt LNP MP who conspired with a Chinese Property Developer? Is that why your work buddies are not online today????
Rae
14th Jul 2018
11:11am
Robb the cards may come anyway. The current government is talking to Serco about it and that $10 000 fee for each card is very tempting and I imagine suits banks and whoever gets the kickback payments as well.
maelcolium
13th Jul 2018
10:39am
Yeah right. Just another piece of flawed "research" to drive future policy south. One of the meanest pensions in the OECD and a fraction of the average weekly earnings, yet still these pointless surveys are conducted and really, for what purpose? I wonder how this all lines up with the survey conducted by Lifechoices which pointed out the "tribes" of pensioners. Not all are equal.
KB
13th Jul 2018
10:52am
Rising cost of living has a lot to do with people being frugal. Let alone the government No one wants to run out of money,
casey
13th Jul 2018
11:35am
Many of us spent the early part of our lives whilst there was still rationing. Our parents lived through the depression and brought us up to be frugal. A habit which we have never lost. we were taught to save, and not to be wasteful.
Kathleen
13th Jul 2018
4:38pm
Spot on! Big families is another reason. We had more mouths to feed and bodies to clothes and educate. Money had to go further. We watched our parents and grandparents save for things they wanted and happy to wait. Items were not thrown out on a whim. We were trained to b careful.
V1K1
13th Jul 2018
11:41am
"If your only source of income is the Age Pension, it’s a guaranteed, inflation-linked income stream. They are protected from inflation and investment risk." Do you really expect me to believe this?
almost a grey hair
13th Jul 2018
12:36pm
protected against inflation as linked to consumer price index and adjusted twice yearly. Also is protected from investment risk as the gov carries all the risk wether in surplus or deficit. It is also guaranteed provided you are entitled to it. So what is the problem ?
OnlyGenuineRainey
13th Jul 2018
12:55pm
The problem, almost a grey, is that the pension does NOT keep up with the real cost of living increases, and the government is constantly looking for ways to further reduce it (e.g. cutting the energy supplement which, at the end of the day, is nothing more than a reduction in the amount of pension). Anybody who trusts that the pension will continue to provide a security and keep pace with inflation is a blithering idiot.

Of course retirees save if they can. They have to. Nobody knows what's around the corner, and both the government and the opposition have proved conclusively that we cannot rely on the government for income security, health care, or aged care.
JJ
13th Jul 2018
1:23pm
Reality tells me that with the rapid increase in the population of pension-age people, and the proportion of pensioners to working people, the government is going to find it very difficult if not impossible to maintain the OAP at the level it is now. there will have to be either a reduction in the value of pension payments, or much more stringent qualification requirements. Along with this, there will be greater and greater demand on our public health systems, which are already strained to the limit. The money cannot be stretched indefinitely.
Sundays
13th Jul 2018
3:26pm
A guaranteed income stream except when the government changes the rules which it does regularly! This article is an attempt to reduce the pittance that is the OAP on the pretence that pensioners aren’t spending it all. No, a smart person always needs some rainy day money for unexpected emergencies
MICK
13th Jul 2018
4:21pm
JJ - if the current bunch of rats get back in expect the attacks to keep coming. Their form is clear and they are not going to stop. It'll be the family home next plus withdrawing more help to self funded retirees and even pensioners. You can bet on that.
VeryCaringBigBear
13th Jul 2018
5:17pm
Mick throw the rats out and you risk getting snakes instead to strangle all us old folk including OAPs.
MICK
13th Jul 2018
5:28pm
My response is what harm has Labor done to retirees in the past? Has it thrown retirees off the pension? Has it brought in unfair tax cuts for the rich which somebody, not the Tooth Fairy, has to pay for?
I see your point but suggest one has to pick the better option and that is not the LNP whose form and intent are clear cut.
VeryCaringBigBear
13th Jul 2018
8:48pm
Put the age pension age up to 67. It will be 70 in their next first term in parliament. Also hearing that they will put a price of your house and if it's worth any more then your pension reduces.
OnlyGenuineRainey
13th Jul 2018
9:37pm
Mick, I despise the LNP and what they have done to retirees, but now Labor is threatening to finish the demolition of self-funded battlers by taxing them 30% on incomes far less than pensioners are receiving tax-free.
OnlyGenuineRainey
13th Jul 2018
9:43pm
JJ, Australia's aged pension costs very little and is highly affordable., We spend about half what other developed nations spend on aged pensions and where their costs are rising fast, ours are falling rapidly. But if the government seriously believed it's own lies about pension affordability and increasing numbers, it wouldn't be discouraging saving with assets tests that make it detrimental to strive to be self-funded. Common sense says that if you want more folk to be self-sufficient, you make sure they are well rewarded for saving. This idiotic (or corrupt) government is doing the exact opposite to what is required to reduce the cost of the OAP. And Labor is proposing to make the situation much worse again. It seems they are trying to force all but the very wealthy onto pensions, and yes, pensions will probably be further reduced - but as part of a social engineering exercise, NOT because of anything to do with affordability.
MICK
13th Jul 2018
10:46pm
OGR - I suspect Labor will come after wealthy self funded retirees like CEOs, directors and the like who have raped the system for decades to build up an obscene nest egg.
It would be a bitter disappointment if they came after somebody with assets under $3 million. The current government will do just that but leave those with high wealth untouched. Tax cuts anyone?
Alexii
14th Jul 2018
7:49pm
JJ, if the government ensured that all big businesses, especially the huge international businesses, paid the tax they should be paying on their earnings in Australia instead of getting off scot free, then we probably wouldn't have any problems at all in paying adequate pensions to all senior people and to providing decent schooling, hospitals, etc. Also they should get rid of all the tax perks and lurks that are legally available to the really high income people in the country. It always seems to me that the middle and low income people are the backbone to the tax system in this country.
ace
13th Jul 2018
11:55am
Who could blame us for spending Less my moneys not growing its shrinking & every thing else is going up health funds , electricity, Petrol & yes I would like too leave my Kids something God they will need it ! this Gov will take away whatever they can from"Welfare " god I don't trust Scmo !! I don't know why I was honest with my taxes etc ,They aren't honest with us !!!
George
13th Jul 2018
4:28pm
Strange how the researcher hasn't concluded a key reason is lack of trust in the mean Govts we have! He should read the YLC posts, and skip his defective research (save money too)!
Rae
14th Jul 2018
11:20am
Yes George. The old betray me once shame on you betray me twice shame on me thing going down.
Alexii
14th Jul 2018
7:52pm
That's right, ace. Why shouldn't we ordinary Joe Bloggs in this country be able to leave something to our kids so that perhaps they may be a little better off in the future because of it. The wealthy are able to leave great assets to their off spring - I can think of one of the wealthiest women in the country who is that way because of what was left to her.
Priscilla
13th Jul 2018
12:02pm
Less and more at times. You have to have money for the unexpected bills and maintenance that occurs like leaky showers, roof maintenance and on and on and on. Also unexpected surgery, health costs and unexpected government changes.
Travellersjoy
13th Jul 2018
12:13pm
Research consistently shows that good mental health depends in large part on how much control people have over their circumstances.

Why would anyone with a choice want to give up a home over which they have control, and a community where they belong, are known and with which they are familiar. All those factors increase personal control.

The same with money. The proposition that, under governments like our present one, the age pension is hedged against inflation (especially inflated energy costs, rental costs, fuel costs, etc) is arrant nonsense. When pensioners want control over their finances they can only do what they have always done, save against the next rainy day.

Pensioners who trust the present government so busy withdrawing all of the social wage elements formerly supplied by local and state governments, to 'give a damn' about pensioners, will wait a long time. Since federal support to local government was cut, costs eg rates, rubbish, and roads, have escalated, while libraries, community transport, etc are cut to keep councils afloat. This was a the intention of the LNP/IPA governments that pulled funding to communities via local and state governments. Pensioners? Pah!

The age pension in Australia is already one of the measliest in the western world, and the government continually reduces pensioner benefits. They need more public money to syphon off to their corporate mates. My mental health and sense of security are constantly threatened by the philosophies they espouse. My financial security is threatened by their price gouging. My dignity is threatened by their contempt for pension beneficiaries.

Of course I spend less than the pension. How else to I survive a government and corporate sector that actively discriminates against low income citizens, and will be best pleased by my death? After collecting their profits, of course.
dreamer
13th Jul 2018
1:12pm
Tj you are so right
almost a grey hair
13th Jul 2018
12:27pm
what worries me about the financial uncertainty of old age is whilst I have been fortunate in employment, real estate and had the foresight to save and invest since starting work at 16. Is why some people get aged care for free, or for the price of their pension while I would have to pay top dollar. Also why worry about the cost of medical, If you've got no dough they will not let u die just because they can make more out of someone else. I know someone who was on the OAP for 30 yrs and when they passed away they had Two Hundred Thousand in a post office savings bank, this was passed onto their children who had no real right to it as they didn't need welfare, in short it should have gone back to gov. Its not a bottomless pit of slop for pigs at the trough.
Triss
13th Jul 2018
12:51pm
What about ex politicians, almost a gray? Some of them have been on their taxpayer funded pension for years and they will be on it for a few more decades. Your OAP fades into insignificance when you think of ex pollies’ pensions, free holidays, multiple houses, etc. They are the ones with their snouts in the trough.
MICK
13th Jul 2018
4:24pm
The old story almost a grey: if you have a zac then hand it over. How you got to that position is immaterial and injustice matters not a razoo.
On the other hand you have the money stripped from retires being handed to the wealthy via tax cuts...personal as well as company.
You should know ho NOT to vote for and those who put the tick in the wrong box deserve what is coming.
JJ
13th Jul 2018
12:30pm
We are fairly comfortable in retirement, but looking ahead means we must be very careful with our spending. my husband will almost definitely need nursing home placement due to disability issues, and to purchase placement in just an ordinary establishment will cost us around half a million. Add to that the ongoing costs associated with upkeep of our small home and our savings are going to be reduced to very little. I do not anticipate moving into residential care with my husband, as I am reasonably fit, but will not be physically capable of caring for him indefinitely. And as everyone is stating, we don't know what awaits us down the track.
almost a grey hair
13th Jul 2018
12:51pm
I can see why you are concerned but in my parents situation (both still alive) when mum had to go into a nursing home (high care) They then went from receiving pension at couple rate to each rec as single as separated due to health. Her care is paid from her slice of pension with about $20 pfn left for incidentals (she doesn't need anything). Dad still lives in his own town house with no effect on his financial situation at all. He rec his pension at the single rate and I know for a fact that he has $130k in his super left, mum has nothing as never had any. I think there is a great deal of scaremongering going on which does not help peoples health and wellbeing
Rae
14th Jul 2018
11:29am
Yes almost but it's different for those who fund themselves. Everything costs the same as a full time worker pays. For those living on the 40% of past earnings we recently read about it's quite frightening.

The scaremongering is for those of us relying on our own resources without any help from this crazy government.
OnlyGenuineRainey
13th Jul 2018
12:51pm
Sounds like yet another attempt to find an excuse to cut retirement incomes. The retiree is constantly under attack by both major parties. Apparently, any BS excuse will do to slice away at their income and destroy their lifestyle.
MICK
13th Jul 2018
4:28pm
Any excuse will do with the current crooks in suits. Just think what awaits us after the election should the top end of town media manage to get these rats back in.
VeryCaringBigBear
13th Jul 2018
5:19pm
Yes Mick we will snakes to strangle us instead of rats that just gnaw at us.
MICK
13th Jul 2018
5:29pm
Read my response above!
Rosret
13th Jul 2018
1:00pm
"even though they can afford to spend more".

Self funded retirees under the new scheme have a cache of money that has to last for the duration of retirement.

Unlike OAPs and retirement schemes of old that guaranteed an income, adjusted to the CPI for life, the self funded retiree must last approximately 30 years.

Inflation for the retiree with investments is a bonus especially during the housing market boom. On the down side though inflation means higher utility costs and labour charges.

Personally, I budget. - however then stuff can happen, the car needs rego & insurance, the dentist bill rolls in, private medical insurance has reached its limit, a bird strikes the largest window pain in the house,the electricity, rates and water bill come in. All of sudden you go from a healthy bank account to OMG. It is absolutely imperative to have a reserve. In fact I did wonder at the time - what do the OAPs do in this situation?
MICK
13th Jul 2018
4:30pm
How is inflation a bonus? The cost of everything goes up. It's only a bonus if you are getting a return (eg., rent) and have a mortgage...the rent goes up and you pay it our quickly.
George
13th Jul 2018
4:31pm
Funny how the researcher doesn't understand the need for a Reserve considering the bad and untrustworthy Govts we have! Obviously, they have bad Financial Planners!
Rosret
13th Jul 2018
4:57pm
MICK High interest rates mean higher returns on superannuation savings.
Higher house prices and rental returns on second or other properties means more income. etc.
George - they are very clever financial planners. What's mine is mine and what's yours is mine. Sooo much money in that retirement kitty and they have their eyes on it. (Both sides).
Do you remember when Labor decided any bank account that hadn't been accessed for 3 years would go into public revenue. They effectively stole people's savings.
I make sure I do a few transactions on all accounts every year since I found out what was going on.
VeryCaringBigBear
13th Jul 2018
5:21pm
Obviously if you hadn't touched your money in 3 years you don't need it.
MICK
13th Jul 2018
5:32pm
BUt the COST of everything goes up proportionately Rosret. In the end you have a capital gain on your property but are no better off. On top of that you are liable for CGT if you sell.
As I said great if you have a mortgage but otherwise nothing in it for you.
Rae
14th Jul 2018
11:38am
George. I believe many researchers have no knowledge of economic history. They are of a demographic who have never experienced a recession and the credit crisis of 2009 was dealt with so efficiently the banks continued to lend to those with security or collateral.

When the bust finally arrives it's going to be a hell of a shock to the current generation with no idea of how fast it can go pear shaped.

Does that count for houses Very Caring Big Bear. There are some wonderful places down at the beach that have been empty for years so perhaps I could just take one as the owners obviously don't need it.

The idea of spending everything each pay and let tomorrow deal with itself is very strange indeed. Especially when all the recent government changes require increased savings behaviours as the only sensible response.
OnlyGenuineRainey
14th Jul 2018
6:22pm
BigBear, that's rubbish. People put money into term deposits for 5 or even 10 years and live off the interest, knowing that a decade from now they will have the need of those funds - or intending to use them for a particular purpose 5 or 1- years down the track.
Mad as hell
13th Jul 2018
2:06pm
Don’t tell me what to do with my assets.
Cowboy Jim
13th Jul 2018
8:49pm
I won't but the Govt will old mate!
lynndi
13th Jul 2018
2:08pm
Where you state (Some research suggests that about 74 per cent of retirees own their homes outright) What about the 26 % who dont ) These are the people who need help, We have a home loan down sized but still have a small loan. It is so hard to live on the pension and pay a home off. Now we are left in the position , if we have to go into a nursing home , The sale of our villa won't even come near whats needed for RAD. So its a lose -lose situation for us. But even though we have no savings or investments we are still luckier than those that do not own a home. Lifes a struggle , those with investment should use up their saving before getting the age pension.
almost a grey hair
13th Jul 2018
3:40pm
we are all born exactly the same -butt naked and toothless- what you do from then on is up to you. The O.A.P. should be universal ie everyone should receive the same. Some people have investments and there is no way you should get more than them because you haven't. Why should people use up their savings and investment money first --where is the incentive to be. "aspirational"
MICK
13th Jul 2018
4:33pm
I understand where you are coming from almost a grey but some folk end up destitute through circumstances whilst others end up destitute because they tried to live a life of privilege and wanted none of the sacrifices often needed to accumulate a nest egg. Horses for courses. I don't know where lynndi fits in so it would be interesting to hear about her working years.
VeryCaringBigBear
13th Jul 2018
5:24pm
If you have no money you pay no RAD for a nursing home. Why would you want to go into Gods waiting room and play bingo waiting for your number to be called? I certainly don't.
lynndi
13th Jul 2018
5:31pm
My husband and I both worked until disability set in . And we thought we were covered by insurance but insurance companies come up with diagnosed pre-existing conditions . We paid into these to cover our retirement. Chance not choice made us totally government supported. yet I see people with millions in the bank whinging they cant get the age pension.
MICK
13th Jul 2018
5:35pm
I think you are stretching the facts a little lynndi. Having said that $1 million is not a lot of money and living off the returns is fine but the risks to loss of capital are also very real.
Don't fool yourself that people with money get into nursing homes before you. They don't. Nor do they get any of the many add-ons people on the pension get.
lynndi
13th Jul 2018
5:35pm
When my grandad was working you paid age pension tax and retirement pension they should have left that in .
MICK
13th Jul 2018
5:37pm
I believe the government of the day stole the money put aside for pensions and rolled it into consolidated revenue. Now it has become an 'entitlement' rather than a right. Worse than that both sides of politics have been circling the large superannuation pot and will in time nationalise superannuation so they can their greedy unaccountable hands on that too.
Rae
14th Jul 2018
11:44am
Constantly upsizing or moving to better locations, new cars every few years, holidays, private schools or whatever leaves people still with a mortgage at retirement is not the saver's responsibility.

Some of us were quite satisfied with our first little homes and saved to produce income in retirement.

I'm over being punished for it when I saw those around me constantly building up debt after debt with no regard for their own future needs.
Chris B T
13th Jul 2018
2:37pm
There must be a lot Jars full of Cash, buried in the back yard, under bed or cupboard.
No way can it be in financial institution as centerlink will be right on it as an asset.
There is no requirement on what the OAP is spent on or how much you spend.
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VeryCaringBigBear
13th Jul 2018
5:25pm
One has only to see how much cash travel agencies take to imagine how much is in the mattress bank.
Cowboy Jim
13th Jul 2018
9:11pm
More interesting now to bury money in the backyard, Chris, since our currency is made of plastic, the worms are not eating it, eh?
GrayComputing
13th Jul 2018
2:49pm
It is time for all of us (that means you) to rant at our MPs and Senators daily to take action for human decency and a huge stress reduction for pensioners

NO ASSET TEST FOR A PENSION EVER AGAIN!
A pension is not welfare.

Most economist say we will save taxpayers money by dropping asset testing because of the massive overheads cost in running Centrelink and the 10,000 conflicting rules.

Hiring more Centrelink staff will only increase taxpayer’s costs for processing the creeping insane red tape monster system politicians and well paid bureaucrats have created.

Help scrap it now. Become a hero.

Even poorer New Zealand has a NO ASSET pension so it is cheaper and user friendly.

Why worry that few million$ earners get it too. That is peanuts to them, not enough for a good vintage champagne.

Do retired and retiring people really look forward and want 100++ visits to/from Centrelink and be part of 3 million waiting queues and lost calls?

Does your MP really like being part of the system that allows this indirect abuse of the elderly?

This abuse is actually sponsored by our government and forced down to Centrelink and borders on a criminal act.

Why do MPs normally compassionate persons let this Centrelink abuse happen at taxpayers’ expense?

Some opposition and independent MPs stand to lose their chance at being part of the needed government changes

We all need to tell our MP and senators every day that these criminal asset tests for a pension must be dropped now.

Also contact opposition and independent MPs who can help us to get a fair deal on pensions

NO ASSET TEST FOR A PENSION EVER AGAIN!
MICK
13th Jul 2018
4:35pm
"Decency" is a word conservatives refuse to acknowledge. They only talk economic BS to get what they want and attack left wing political parties in the worst possible way...from the gutters of the world where they come from.
inquisitive
13th Jul 2018
3:21pm
why do authorities always try to fit everyone in the same box. Don't they realise that we all have differences in need re finance.
Also in our time of life, although the need for lots of material posessions has passed, there is still maybe residential age care to be considered, as well as eventual funeral expenses. Of course we must take care. I wish them good luck with their" retirement index". Like fitting the camel through the eye of the needle challange
HS
13th Jul 2018
5:03pm
A retired single, home owner of a home unit, on an old age pension only, has to save for:
Water rates, Council Rates.Strata levy. Electricity & Gas. Home repairs such as Plumbing taps. Electrical lighting repairs. Painting. Car CTP registration. Contents Insurance. Medical & Pharmaceutical expenses. Electrical goods repairs, such as washing machine, clothes dryer, refrigerator, air conditioning, new tea kettle. Car service and repairs. Car insurance.
Did I mention food? or clothing and shoes? or new mattress? new clothes iron? fuel for the car?
These think tank bastards must be overpaid so much that they have lost touch with reality. They have no clue what it is like living off a fortnightly piddly pension, no clue at all !!!
lynndi
13th Jul 2018
5:33pm
Exactly , I agree, lets see them line up at food banks as they can't afford to live on the pension.
VeryCaringBigBear
13th Jul 2018
8:54pm
Have no trouble myself living off the full pension.
OnlyGenuineRainey
13th Jul 2018
9:29pm
Stop lying, BigBear. It's offensive to those who are genuinely struggling with nothing more than the pension. By your own admission, you have savings and income over and above the pension, and having gifted generously to offspring and grandchildren, you can rely on their help if an emergency arises. You have no idea what life is like for battlers in the real world.
VeryCaringBigBear
13th Jul 2018
5:14pm
I think it is simpler than that myself. More like we have everything we need and no longer have to impress anyone like younger folk do. We just spend on what we need and trip over the saggy mat instead of buying a new one.
HS
13th Jul 2018
5:31pm
Old age pensioners still have to pay for the necessities of living out the rest of their lives and that's why some are more frugal than others. Material goods do not last forever, either they have to be repaired or replaced with new or secondhand. Homeowners have high fixed expenses, it all costs money.
Jim
13th Jul 2018
9:19pm
Guess who, I wouldn't vote for either of the major parties, everyone should consider voting independent, I retired in my 50s after being sick of working for slave wages all my life, I don't receive the pension because I managed to save enough and sacrifice to fund my own retirement, not sure how that one was achieved on slave wages!, this lot are the pensioners enemy they have screwed pensioners at every oppourtunity, Shorten has claimed that he has changed his mind on screwing pensioners and low income earners on their meagre returns on franking credits, strange I have just received my monthly newsletter from Labor's Noreen Hay declaring that it's still part of Labor policy. If you haven't guessed yet this guy constantly accuses others on this site of being LNP stooges and trolls, I suspect that this guy doesn't receive the pension because he is either an employee or indeed a Labor party member maybe even a politician, too many inconsistencies to be credible, if something smells fishy look for the dead fish!
MICK
13th Jul 2018
10:53pm
Been saying that for a long time Jim BUT can we risk allowing the current dictatorship in progress to stay in power? Think about what this lot have done to average Australians and retirees in the past few years alone and what they have planned once the election is over.

A better strategy is vote this lot out and then plan the next move.
Jim
14th Jul 2018
7:41am
I think the bigger question is can we trust a Shorten backed green alliance, the clear answer is an emphatic NO, it's clear from his latest rants that the greens have got to him, just on energy alone, I agree that we need at some time to go to clean energy, we should be progressing towards clean energy in a cost effective way, if the greens and Labor do get in at the next election then clearly their policies are to close down coal fired generators, without any clear alternative, wind farms are horrible looking things I have just returned from 6 weeks travelling around Europe those wind generators are a scar on the landscape, solar is a far better system but it can never be a total solution, maybe we should get rid of all politicians and go back to a feudal system,
Kathleen
14th Jul 2018
10:03pm
Not this time! It is not safe to do so. You look at the present situation not how you usually vote or flick around but be sure to put in the ones who will be able to halt the present government. The divide needs to be addressed and put some help for the low income earners and trickle up for a change.
Cowboy Jim
13th Jul 2018
9:21pm
Maybe the Govts could offer the oldies Govt housing (commission housing) for life for giving up their modest dwellings as for a lot of people it would improve their living standards. My costs for the year just to keep a unit is $5000 (rates and body corp incl insurance). Commission units are just 25% of the full pension. The rest is for electric and food, not too bad. I know quite a few such people and they do not complain and I see them quite often in the pub for a beer.
musicveg
14th Jul 2018
12:56am
Have to get all those people in Government housing out that don't need it anymore, it is a broken system which allows people to stay in their Government housing even when their situation improves like getting a well paid job, when they can afford to go into the regular rental market or even put a deposit on a house.
Cowboy Jim
14th Jul 2018
11:02am
musicveg - you do have a point. We have single old ladies living in 3-bedroom places because these ladies had once a family and consider the dwelling their home. The reason often is given that they need the extra room when children/grandchildren come to visit. That house should be given to a needy family and the old lady housed in a small apartment. I know the whole family would complain!
musicveg
14th Jul 2018
12:59am
They must have surveyed all the pensioners who are doing okay so it sounds like more pensioners don't need to spend all their pensions. I am sure they did not ask all those who are struggling to make ends meet.
Noodles
14th Jul 2018
1:49pm
Quite frankly I find these surveys stupid.

Ask people who are only getting the pension and have no other source of income.

Then ask the next group who are part pension, part self funded and then ask the third group; those who are fully self funded.

You are going to get entirely different results from all three groups!

No good just surveying a group called "retirees"
OnlyGenuineRainey
14th Jul 2018
6:44am
Why is it so terrible for retirees to save for possible future contingencies? What's wrong with them not spending more than they need to? Maybe they will be able to contribute to the cost of aged care when the time comes, and leave enough to cover the cost of their funeral?

And why is the possibility that they might leave something to their offspring such a concern? With the level of private debt in Australia at a worrying high, just maybe us frugal retirees could help out by leaving the next generation a bit to help reduce their debt and avoid losing the family home - or something to give the grandkids a leg up. It might even be that our frugal ways and leaving something behind reduces the cost of the OAP for the next generation, or reduces the number of OAPs living in poverty. Gee, wouldn't that be terrible?

Unless the powers-that-be are committed to a wrongful social engineering program (which I believe they are), there is no logical reason to worry about retirees being responsible with their money. It's a good thing if they are spending less than their income most weeks.
VeryCaringBigBear
17th Jul 2018
9:50pm
It is not wrong but what it tells those who decide if welfare is adequate or not is that it says it is more than adequate.
Charlie
14th Jul 2018
7:40am
Is this a joke?

Is there some stupid rule that age pensioners cant save for ,clothes, appliances,medical expenses, registration, electricity, computer connections, etc , etc, etc

Is the government really asking this or is it some political smear tactic?
clarkey
14th Jul 2018
8:18am
Most pensioners are too scared to spend what savings they have because they do not know what the government is going to do next to them. They have no confidence in this current government to do the right thing by us. Our utilities just keep getting more and more expensive, council rates are a rip off in rural NSW. The meagre pension does not keep up with any form of inflation whatsoever. The health system is a shambles as like all the other government departments the lnp are destroying slowly. I hope that the pensioners of Australia vote at the next election for a party who is a true political party who want to govern for the people and not the professional politicians who are only in politics for the money and power. The pension is not welfare we earned the right to a pension by paying tax all our working lives. If any of you on a pension can't think or don't have an idea on a party that will look after your interests and all the other portfolios that are being destroyed by the current government have a look at the United Pensioners Party and Pensioners for the Senate. Do not trust what you read in any of Murdochs rags as they are pro lnp.
Rae
14th Jul 2018
11:08am
Mr Gebler may be quite young and not have experienced the rapid inflation period through the 80s as well as the credit crisis of 1973/4 and the banking crisis of 1989 to 1992.

Having experienced these makes saving a little just in case entirely rational.

Downsizing sound fine but often costs more than needed and if the retirees are happy in their home why should they downsize and spend just to suit the consumer society.

Let others get into trouble spending up big on unneeded stuff and consumption.

Not pensioners job to support a bloated financial, hospitality and retail industry at all.
Noodles
14th Jul 2018
1:45pm
No daily transport costs, no upkeep or need for more clothing, shoes. Definitely do not spend as much in retirement on these sorts of things. Now have money to spend on eating out, travelling if we wish to do so. We do not actively safe money but it just happens.
HS
14th Jul 2018
2:37pm
you might not actively safe money but you save money just to be on the safe side...
Noodles
15th Jul 2018
10:55am
ty for pointing out my typo..much appreciated.
as for saving money to be on the safe side I have no need to do so but I understand that many need to make sure they have a safety net in case things go wrong...anyone would be a fool not to have something in reserve.
Geminiwoman
14th Jul 2018
2:07pm
Personally I find this to be a load of hogwash. I, as well as many of my friends, are Aged Pensioners. We all find it difficult to make it from fortnight to fortnight, even to the point where some of us outright lie to be able to get the advance on our pensions twice a year so that we can manage to pay for unexpected expenses, i.e. repairs to or replacement of household necessities like washing machines, fridges etc., medical expenses and so on. I personally am very fussy about making sure I have plenty of food in the house, but my pension doesn't stretch far enough for the above items. I know this also applies to my
aged Pensioner friends as well.
HS
14th Jul 2018
2:33pm
If you suspect that this story maybe a precursor for new Welfare and Pension Legislation
check out the…

Australian Federal Register of Legislation

https://www.legislation.gov.au/Search/WELFARE

https://www.legislation.gov.au/Search/PENSION
musicveg
14th Jul 2018
4:49pm
Looks like they are planning on a few changes, if you can understand what is written, I did read a bit, found the bit about over 55's having to do 30 hours mutual obligation activities. So all those who cannot get work will be turned into slaves, when will they actually have time to look for work?
If you have read some of this HS and understand it all maybe you can point out a few important changes that they are planning so others here know and understand. It is all a bit hard to understand in the language they write it in.
GrumpyOldMan
14th Jul 2018
4:30pm
C'mon people. Successive governments, regardless of persuasion, have been made aware over the last three decades that I can remember, that people were living longer, unemployment was held at a particular level, immigration was balanced to keep a lower class where they were and not one ruling party has managed to keep pace with the necessities of those who retire on the pension. As long as politicians grant themselves immunity to the problem of facing life on the edge, this country will hardly improve. Are we not clever enough to fill the job vacancies? Skilled migrants should be introduced only when the unemployment rates go negative. According to P.M. MT we should have employment and growth. Yes! In that order though. When unemployment reaches 0% we should then go for growth. Growth first means more profit for big business, less for mainstream workers and less for pensioners. Not everyone has high paying jobs all their life and can afford to salt away a sizeable nest egg although credit to those who do. Those who manage to just stay afloat and even maybe pay off their home for 35 years or so have little left over for luxuries. Accumulated super's of $40 _80,000.00 aren't going to make these people race off on overseas jaunt or purchase a yacht. Let's face it, that is roughly less than 1 years wages today. Other countries have also known these facts and have acted accordingly to afford their most valuable citizens a lifestyle that befits their contribution to this world we now take for granted. STOP WHINGEING and vote accordingly in your next election. That probably means voting in members who are not yet millionaires!!
Cowboy Jim
14th Jul 2018
9:03pm
Unemployment has never been 0% and skilled immigration is a must as long as the young just want arts degrees from the university and then complain that they cannot get an easy pen pushers job. I have been one of those tradies with a 4 year apprenticeship at low pay and you just cannot get the young interested any more. A job where one gets one's hands dirty is just not sexy today.
Noodles
15th Jul 2018
10:52am
Totally agee with your comments Cowboy Jim.

Re skilled immigration leads me onto something I saw in today's new...a boat almost made it in with "chinese would be asylum seekers" (last month).

Thankfully border force were on hand to turn back. Remember who turned back the boats next time you vote as the people smugglers are just waiting for a change of government and then we will see how strong Labor are on protecting our borders (if they get in).
musicveg
15th Jul 2018
4:49pm
It is not the boats you should be worrying about Noodles, it is the 200,000 LEGAL immigrants that come every year, the only party I can find that is going to drop it to 70,000 is the Sustainable Australia Party, everyone else thinks it is good for business and growth, of course low income and middle class Australians are getting squeezed out while rich immigrants push up the prices.
Noodles
15th Jul 2018
6:47pm
It was reported in the news yesterday that there has been a 21,000 drop in legal migration this year.
musicveg
15th Jul 2018
6:54pm
Not enough to make much difference, also we have many staying on visas and going back to their country and then return to renew their visas. If you have a good job you can do this easily and visit the family while you are there.
Noodles
16th Jul 2018
9:45am
The goverment can now fill those 21,000 places with people we need in this country.
OnlyGenuineRainey
15th Jul 2018
7:11am
How much does the government pay these illiterates to come up with this BS? They would do far better just reading YLC posts. At least they would learn what REALLY drives retiree behaviour.
VeryCaringBigBear
17th Jul 2018
9:47pm
Seems to me to be a lot more reliable than LYC posts.
Hairy
16th Jul 2018
1:25pm
With this goverment I would not put my faith in having enough to live on tomorrow .Discriminating rorting lieing theiving despicable and need to be stripped of their taxpayer funded grossly overpaid pensions while the x workers of the nation are persecuted for daring to still breathe and claim their rightful pension earned with a 7.5% tax paid by every worker since the 40s . Stolen by this theiving goverment.Trust for me will never be a fact again.


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