Age Pension boost or super top ups? Which would help pensioners more?

Should super top ups be scrapped in favour of an Age Pension or rent assistance boost?

Age Pension boost or super top ups? Which would help pensioners more?

Grattan Institute CEO John Daley says there are better ways to provide adequate retirement funding for low-income earners – and super top ups is not one of them.

Mr Daley believes that providing super top ups for low-income earners would be too costly and too hard to target those most in need. He also feels that fees charged by super funds would negate any benefits of an annual super top up.

The Grattan Institute CEO suggests that while a targeted boost to the Age Pension would be far more beneficial in ensuring an adequate retirement for all Australians, there may be an even more effective way to improve the incomes of those most in need.

It’s common knowledge that retirees who don’t own their homes are most at risk of living a poor retirement. Many will even live below the poverty line. Mr Daley believes that a $500 annual boost in rent assistance for eligible older Australians, which would cost the Government around $200 million per year, would be the most efficient way to boost the retirement incomes of low-income earners.

On the other hand, a $500 increase to the Age Pension would cost the Government around $1.3 billion and half of that would be going to pensioners with a net worth of more than $500,000 who own their own homes that are exempt from the Age Pension means tests.

While Mr Daley’s suggestions may not be popular for many Australians, it would be interesting to see what you think of them. Why not let us know in the comments below?

Read more at The Grattan Institute website

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    COMMENTS

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    Queensland Diva
    18th Nov 2016
    10:07am
    I certainly think an increase in rental allowance is a great thing. I am fortunate enough to own my own modest home, but I don't know how people who are renting can survive on the pension.
    Tom Tank
    18th Nov 2016
    11:35am
    I agree in that owning your own home on, of before retirement, makes a huge difference to a standard of living once retired.
    Before the usual contributions flood in blaming people for not owning their on home, or making proper financial preparations for retirement, just pause and remember the old saying "that you must walk a mile in someone else's shoes before you can understand them and their circumstances".
    Notwithstanding that I am sure we will hear all about someone who knows someone who spent all their money on booze and gambling.
    iamnotold
    18th Nov 2016
    12:59pm
    A little over half my age pension goes on rent so a rise in rent assistance would be very welcome. Government housing is either not suitable or not available for me, I prefer to choose where and what type of place to live even if it costs more.
    Anonymous
    21st Nov 2016
    8:20am
    Okay, but should the taxpayer pay for your PREFERENCES? If you demand the right of choice, that's surely not the taxpayer's responsibility? I chose to spend 4 decades struggling to pay off a mortgage, and I'm being disadvantaged financially now because of it. I could rent for less than it's costing me to own a home. But the taxpayer isn't helping pay my rates or insurance or maintenance costs.

    If Government housing is not available, that's a different issue - but if it is, accept or suffer the financial hardship that results from choosing not to accept.
    Anonymous
    23rd Nov 2016
    7:28am
    Actually, iamnotold, nearly half my weekly income goes on the costs of owning a home, and my weekly income is slashed by the government as punishment for slogging my guts out for 40 years to pay that home off. So some ''home ownership costs assistance'' would be very helpful to me too. Sorry if I'm not very sympathetic, but 99% of those who rent could have owned a home if they'd worked and sacrificed as much as I did. It was a bloody hard slog! And now I'm worse off for having done it.
    Peanuts
    18th Nov 2016
    11:46am
    This targeted approach for the worst off makes a lot of sense to me.
    Alan
    30th Mar 2017
    10:34am
    I agree with you!
    GeorgeM
    18th Nov 2016
    11:51am
    Tinkering around the edges is all that such consultants can do. The whole Pension system, especially with the revised Assets Test from Jan 2017 which targets those who saved for retirement, stinks! Govt would do well to keep all such consultants away.

    Rather than such silly tweaks, it is best to throw out this whole Age Pension system, with ATO to give the full Age Pension to all who have paid taxes (for say 10 / 15 / 20 years, or have paid $x in taxes) , and then tax all actual income above it. That would make it fair for everyone. The current Age Pension system administered by Centrelink is only useful for late migrants / others who slip through the above definition.

    Super was meant to be an add-on benefit to pensions, and should continue to have tax benefits with caps to avoid excessive exploitation, so it is a good tool to encourage savings and better quality retirement. Govt needs to avoid attacking savers, and focus on fairness!
    Old Geezer
    18th Nov 2016
    5:28pm
    The changes to the 2017 assets test are a great step in the right direction, People effected by these changes don't need to pension. It is just nice to have. Age of entitlement is well and truly over so get used to it. After all the OAP is welfare and should only be given to those who need it.
    Alexii
    18th Nov 2016
    7:09pm
    i agree with you, George.
    GreyViper
    18th Nov 2016
    10:03pm
    I agree with you, Old Geezer.
    TREBOR
    19th Nov 2016
    3:04pm
    Aged Pension is not welfare - it is a bought and paid for right.
    GeorgeM
    20th Nov 2016
    1:23pm
    Thanks, Alexii & Trebor. I usually ignore the extreme right-wing Liberal-supporting posts of OG. He probably also has a case of sour grapes by not benefitting from pensions / benefits. He has no understanding of the huge hit of the revised Assets Test from Jan 2017 (up to $14,000 p.a. for a couple in their own home) on savers who tried to do the right thing. Caps for Super benefits need to be tightened and taxes increased on those at higher incomes, but as I stated Pensions (not being welfare) should be paid in full to all who qualify if they paid reasonable amount of taxes in this country.
    Anonymous
    20th Nov 2016
    4:41pm
    You would have to be rather lacking in logic to claim that taking money away from people who may be on very low incomes, in poor health, or facing high home maintenance or care costs in later life to give to people who saved less and possibly have far lower needs and higher incomes is in any way ''a step in the right direction''.

    The asset test change did NOTHING for battlers. It gave folk with healthy bank accounts a $30 boost, funded by stealing the retirement of people who saved a little more - potentially because they knew they would need it more.

    The bottom line is that the pension system is broken. It's a mess. And the change to the assets test was a short-sighted and ill-considered move that made things very much worse. But fools like OG can't see past ''have money, steal it''. Yes, probably blinded by the green eyes syndrome! Certainly bat-eyed and incapable of reason.
    Kosmo
    18th Nov 2016
    11:51am
    Most pensioners don't have any left on their super, they need an jncrease on the pension and benefits. Like rent assistance
    Cheezil61
    18th Nov 2016
    12:04pm
    Good idea. Agree but regarding owning a home-those who fully own their home outright (no mortgage) probably do not need such assistance, but what about those still with a hefty mortgage/home loan due to circumstances beyond their control (broken relationships/low income etc)?
    in2sunset
    18th Nov 2016
    12:50pm
    Disagree - how do you know if those who have a hefty mortgage left at retirement have squandered their money during their younger years? After years of slogging, many times 3 jobs at a time, not buying new cars, not going on lavish holidays, at age 64 I have just paid off my modest little 2BR house. Yet it gauls me to hear some of my friends, many married with 2 incomes, and similar age, complain about the mortgage they still have to pay as they approach pension time. Why should they be assisted more?
    TREBOR
    18th Nov 2016
    8:27pm
    Ah, yes - the old Law Of the Jungle - automatic presumption of squandering...

    That's a lot like a bloke who's divorced at 48, lost his home, then lost his job, then got sick and injured - and who then - because he has nothing, must perforce have spent his life as a bum and on the beach and on drugs, and probably as dope fiend or similar..... he's got nothing so he must be one of those lifetime bums.... probably drank or gambled it all... instead of generously over-providing for his children's well-being and future at his own expense....

    You're looking at him.....
    Nan Norma
    18th Nov 2016
    9:36pm
    in2sunset. Why shouldn't they be assisted?
    in2sunset
    20th Nov 2016
    1:26am
    Nan Norma - you HAVE to be joking!! Why the hell should they be assisted? I cannot believe what a stupid shallow comment - unless you are one of those who lived the high life and now cry 'poor me' because they don't own their home outright. I'm not saying that people who don't own their own home outright should not get some assistance - I am sick of hearing the discriminatory comments about who should get what. Its called OLD AGE PENSION. So when you reach 'old age' - you get the pension. If the Govt would stop tampering and changing things, without all these exceptions and provisos, and rules that can be manipulated by certain people, then all seniors would be able to manage and survive, not live in poverty.
    Anonymous
    20th Nov 2016
    4:32pm
    I agree, in2sunset. Owning a home in retirement can also be costly. Add the loss of rent assistance and the variation in asset limits, plus rates and insurance and maintenance costs and I know many who would be better off NOT owning their home - especially if their home is aging.

    The problem is generalizing. The change to the assets test ASSUMED anyone with higher than average saving is better able to support themselves, but that's just crap. Some of those with higher savings went without extensively to save KNOWING they would have a lesser capacity than most to earn adequate income in their old age, or knowing they would face high costs for particular needs. The changed assets test hurts many who will genuinely struggle once their savings are compulsorily depleted, while high income earners continue to party and get part pensions with all the benefits.

    Similarly with rent vs. home ownership. You simply can't ASSUME that everyone who rents is worse off than everyone who owns, because individual circumstances vary.

    Frankly, I'm sick of the notion that society should hand out indiscriminately to folk who, in many cases, were irresponsible, while folk who struggled for 4 decades to pay off a mortgage are ASSUMED to be always better off. I think it's time to review the entire pension system. Abolish it start over from the ground up, without the stupid preconceived notions and with proper respect for our aging population and their needs, and recognition that our younger folk CAN afford to support their oldies if they reduce the overseas holidays and restaurant dinners etc that we never even dreamed of having when raising kids and paying off mortgages. Goodness, I heard yesterday the average wedding costs $65,000. That's a deposit on a modest home, for heaven's sake! But they party, then they whinge that homes aren't affordable. Well, we struggled to buy homes too - older style 2 bed/1 bath in need of renovation, not the new luxury mansions that seem to be standard today.
    in2sunset
    20th Nov 2016
    11:46pm
    Rainey - oh so nice to find someone else on the same wavelength as me! I recently went to a close friends' daughters wedding and can only describe it as obscene. So many weddings now are simply trying to go one better than anyone else. They are constantly going overseas, updating cars, and bemoaning the fact they can't afford to buy a house. Agree - their wedding would have been a deposit on a house. Now they want my friend to be guarantor so they can buy a house, to which I have expressed my utmost horror and disgust. Much to my relief, she has said no, and now faces a very disgruntled and 'poor me' daughter. Also totally gauls me about Paid Parental Leave, and all the money wasted on illegal trespassers. I have never been on any Govt welfare, wasn't around for a First Home Owners Grant, Baby Bonus, etc.
    Here is a classic example of the mentality of many younger people and their expectation of entitlement to constant handouts. My neighbor and I recently agreed to install a new dividing fence, but when it cane time to pay -after they signed to pay - wife reneged. Excuse - almost exact words - 'My husband now earns over $160,000 a year and that means we are not entitled to any govt benefits, so we can't pay for the fence.' I nearly fell off my chair! . I went through the legal channels and finally got my money, but only 4 days before the court case. Paid all in cash.
    I had to struggle, work and save to buy a house - younger ones can do the same.
    Old Man
    18th Nov 2016
    1:09pm
    I just love it when experts give advice that involves spending other people's money. If the comment was only to spend $200M on rental subsidies and we are asked to comment, I'm sure that comments would be different rather than throwing in an impossible figure which could never be considered.
    Rae
    18th Nov 2016
    1:23pm
    Targeted Social Security is the way to go.

    As a Nation we have decided to keep wages very low for these workers deliberately. We have voted in governments that had policies that were designed to create stagnation of minimum wages since at least the 1980s.

    Take an average minimum wage worker lucky to get 40 hours a week, which most don't.

    That just under $800 a week is around $75 dollars super a week then tax of 15% plus fees, charges, insurance say $50 a week super $2500 a year or $25 000 a decade plus the very low returns and remember those losses in 1987, 2003, 2008 etc.

    That poor hard worker might have around $100 000 if they are really lucky after 40 years.

    It isn't going to keep them.

    Superannuation only works for high income earners with disposable wealth and that is because of the tax minimisation or forced saving plan.

    So the poor bastards at the bottom of the productivity share deserve rent assistance and decent pensions after 67. It's the very least society can do for the sacrifice these workers make to ensure the wealthy have a terrific lifestyle.
    Anonymous
    23rd Nov 2016
    7:22am
    Oh, I agree to a point, Rae. But not at the expense of those who - often coming from the same or greater disadvantage - slogged their guts out for decades to save to provide for their own comfortable retirement, then saw investment returns smashed and found themselves needing a modest weekly top-up to meet their rather modest income needs.

    The super and pension system is a disaster. It doesn't need a minor tweak. It needs a total overhaul - but designed by battlers who have been there and done that and know the real world, not by privileged a-holes whose only focus is protecting the rich from a slightly increased tax burden.
    floss
    18th Nov 2016
    1:34pm
    Dead easy become a Polly.
    Oldman Roo
    18th Nov 2016
    1:58pm
    I believe tinkering around the edges of the Pension system can never be fair and satisfactory for all recipients . For starters there are too many variables from people in their sixties to eighties + , all facing different financial difficulties . From January 1st we will be facing a new problem with many Pensioners having to cope with severe reductions in their Pensions and their savings can not even come near in replacing or matching the income of the person without savings .
    So let our Government for once take responsibility , increase Pensions to everyone , instead of trying to get out of it on the cheap again by paying a little extra here and there ..
    Rae
    18th Nov 2016
    2:39pm
    Exactly why calling the legislation The Fair and Sustainable Pension Act actually proves politicians idiots. It's about as Newspeak as you can get without actually being Orwell.

    If it stuffs up small business we will know exactly who to blame.

    Greek was forced into Austerity and 7000 shops closed their doors just in Athens alone.
    Rae
    18th Nov 2016
    2:42pm
    Oh and they print the money. we are not talking borrowing funds to pay Australian retirees pensions as it gets paid in Aussie dollars. The only problem with giving everyone a pension would be if we had rampant inflation and that is very far from happening any time soon.
    Joy Anne
    18th Nov 2016
    2:42pm
    I agree with I am not old. I enquired about Government housing 4 years ago and told I would have to wait at least a min of 10 years. How crazy is that. Yet Refugees and others can get it within 3-6 months. Australians should come first. I pay 2/3rds of my age pension in rent. So an increase in rental assistance is imperative. I don't want to live in a dump and around where drugs are being taken and sold in front of our noses. I have been in that situation before and was paying the same rent then. We need at least $150 per fortnight in rental increase so we can afford to rent a decent place to live.
    Snowflake
    18th Nov 2016
    3:14pm
    Give it a little bit more time and you will see the disenfranchised look at other ways of tilting the balance. We've seen the improbable happen in America, the groundswell of discontent proved us all wrong.
    The last election in this country was a true embarrassment for the Liberal government.
    I love the senate being well and truly out of the hands of the Liberals.
    Pensioners have been an easy target for too long. Maybe there should be a pensioners party, if we all voted the power might shift. There is stuff all alternative.
    Alexii
    18th Nov 2016
    7:13pm
    Try SUPA - Seniors United Party. There are others too.
    Dee
    18th Nov 2016
    3:25pm
    In theory an increase in rental allowance would be a wonderful thing. However, as we see with all government payments and grants as soon as they're offered, the market goes, "thanks a lot lets now increase prices". We see this with first buyers home grant etc. If only there was a way to give assistance based on need without the general populace and market knowing. Housing is the biggest thorn in our side in this country. Unless homes are taken off the table as a means of investment this cycle will never stop. If we had the philosophy in this country that everyone has a right to their own home and legislate accordingly the picture would improve. If we want investors to continue to make money on the backs of those that can't afford their own property, the poor will only get poorer, no matter the government intervention.
    Circum
    19th Nov 2016
    8:01pm
    Its not the investors who push up the price of properties.They are simply reacting to both government policy re negative gearing and more particularly the reserve bank who reduce interest rates and encourage negative business behaviour at the expense of potential home owners.Pensioners savings are also impacted negatively.Yet the business side of town sees this as a positive,encouraging economic growth.Pigs bum
    terrib
    18th Nov 2016
    3:31pm
    It will not help those in government housing as the rent assistance goes to the housing department & we still have to pay our 25%. So we would get nothing. I would like to see an increase in the pension then a person can spend it how they wish. If they put it to rent it amounts to the same thing but at least every pensioner would gain.
    KSS
    18th Nov 2016
    10:01pm
    The whole point is that the suggestion is for rental assistance. It is meant for rent not someone's 'wishes'. If the assistance went directly to the housing department and covered more than 75% of the rent, the pensioner would have more in their pocket. So they might not get a cheque but they would have more dollars to spend. At least the money would be spent on rent!
    Needy not Greedy
    18th Nov 2016
    4:30pm
    How long does Mr Daley think pensioners who own their own home will see that home exempt from the asset test? With foreign dept busting through the Trillion mark and the Aussie dollar showing signs of falling despite several prop ups you would need to be on some serious drugs to think that our magnificent PM and his bunch of yobbos aren't developing some devious plan to put an end to the family home being asset test exempt and force another swathe of retirees off the pension to join the 500,000 doing that from Jan 1st 2017, all sounds great until 10 yrs or so go by and all these retirees have used their own assets to live on and are now poor enough to go onto a full pension, what is the plan then? Involuntary Euthanasia?
    Alexii
    18th Nov 2016
    7:14pm
    Yes.
    Anonymous
    20th Nov 2016
    4:37pm
    Spot on, Needy not Greedy. But the home IS already asset tested, just at a fixed value. Homeowners are heavily disadvantaged in terms of the pension they receive if they have some savings as well, despite the fact that the costs of owning a home can be substantial.

    The assets test change is a time bomb that will drive the costs of pensions through the roof as people realize how expensive it is to have those extra savings. Adding further incentives to rent rather than own will compound the problem. What we need is a system that encourages and supports those who try hard to be as self-supporting as possible in old age, while providing a decent standard of living for those who genuinely CAN'T (as opposed to those who don't bother to try!).
    PIXAPD
    18th Nov 2016
    4:39pm
    'It’s common knowledge that retirees who don’t own their homes are most at risk of living a poor retirement. ' <<<<<< Is it? that's NONSENSE.

    A single aged pensioner, renting, CAN save up to $7800 a year or $300 a f/night from the pension payment plus supplements and full rent assistance, which is $1007.70 a f/night

    The Govt needs to supply MORE Affordable housing, which is the way to go, it's only 30% of pension, and actual rent paid can be as low as $150 a week for a nice studio apartment. With secure entry, underground parking and storage cage thrown in. You can't beat that.
    in2sunset
    20th Nov 2016
    1:43am
    Please stop copying and pasting the same paragraph over and over and over and over and over again. Gets to be very tedious and boring.....
    PIXAPD
    20th Nov 2016
    12:57pm
    I see it ONCE for this article.... and will give it at other times so that even 1 person might be encouraged.
    Anonymous
    23rd Nov 2016
    7:34am
    Encouraged to what, PIXAPD. Be as tunnel-visioned and self-serving as you and assume that everyone is in the same circumstances? Your posts are grossly offensive and hideously misleading, because they are based on wild assumptions about the lives of other people about whom you know NOTHING AT ALL.
    PIXAPD
    23rd Nov 2016
    11:13am
    Encouraged by the fact that they too understand
    Troubadour
    18th Nov 2016
    5:52pm
    An increase of $500 per annum rent assistance would certainly
    be a great help to those of us renting. It is the rent which hurts us most.
    counting pennies
    18th Nov 2016
    8:39pm
    Ok I have a question,I am not retirement age,still work in a job paying 15% less than the nations weekly.retail.I own my own home thru sheer doing without,and have investments.Just by being cautious.Oh,and have three now grown children.So if I dont get the pension,as I expect will happen,do I get discounted utilities,and medical ? Or do I just keep paying.Running a home isnt cheap and there are many things renters never have to pay for,such as home insurance,council rates and fixed water charges,not to mention maintenance
    KSS
    18th Nov 2016
    10:12pm
    Counting pennies, I say the same thing. Owning your own home comes with expenses that renters never have to deal with. Yet you will get no discounts for anything - all the things you mention plus no discount on prescriptions, money off Tuesdays with your shopping for example, no discount on car registration and the list goes on. Tough if you are only just over the new lower asset cap!
    Circum
    19th Nov 2016
    8:22pm
    It seems very harsh to stop all discounts especially seeing some have nothing to do with federal government expenditure.Travel discounts being one.My barber no longer gives me a discount as I am no longer classified as a pensioner but a self funded retiree
    Circum
    19th Nov 2016
    8:28pm
    Both age pension top ups and super top ups will achieve nothing and are simply actions to fiddle with a weakening pension/super system created by current politicians.
    counting pennies
    19th Nov 2016
    8:44pm
    Oh I dont know what do do! Continue to work hard,full time to pay my way later,or ease up a bit and enjoy life a little more.My son,daughter in law and grandchild live with me due to their circumstances,and I would dearly love to have more time at home now
    Anonymous
    21st Nov 2016
    8:41am
    Not much point working and saving if you can't get well over the new assets threshold, countingpennies. The IDIOTS in power can't do math to figure out that if you are affected by the new assets test, but can't achieve a high income from your investments, you are better off having much less.

    You have to get a better than 10% return on investments, or have more than about $1.2 million in income-generating assets (for a couple) to be better off having saved. Otherwise, restrict your savings to the maximum you can have and still get a full pension.

    A homeowner couple just over the new cut-off, getting 3% return, will have an income of about $22500 with ZERO pensioner benefits, vs having only $375,000 and getting a full pension + benefits, giving a total income of around $45,500 PLUS benefits worth an estimated $3000 a year.

    Won't take long to deplete those hard won savings making up the huge difference! So effectively those being wrongly punished for saving are being forced to GIFT their savings to folk who didn't work as hard!
    Old Geezer
    22nd Nov 2016
    1:59pm
    Great move by the government in having people use their own assets until they get their assets down to a level where the can access the OAP safety net. It's about time people used their own assets instead of double dipping on welfare. After all what use are those assets to them after they die? None at all.
    Anonymous
    23rd Nov 2016
    7:19am
    Many of them are NOT double-dipping, you fool! They have been deprived and cheated and suffered injustice for a lifetime while all the greedy and irresponsible quadruple-dip, and then some. They PAID for their pensions - into a fund intended to provide aged pensions for all. But I get it. If you are privileged and can stash your money in a super account in your own name, it's yours. If you are not, and are forced to put it into a trust account with the government - on a promise that it will fund your old age - not only is it okay for the government to steal it, but they can steal your savings as well and give them to people who paid far less tax, contributed far less to the nation, lived far more lavishly, and saved nothing.

    You really are a bitter, twisted person, OG! So self-serving and judgmental, but with NO IDEA AT ALL what you are on about, because you just don't live in the real world. You live in some la-la utopia.

    What use of assets after they die? To give their kids some of the PRIVILEGES they were denied - IF there is any left. But the real issue is that there isn't enough to last a lifetime in many cases, given special needs, inflation, longevity, and personal circumstances about which you and mongrels like you know ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.

    People who saved for retirement SHOULD be entitled to enjoy the retirement they saved for - not forced to gift their savings to people who need it less. If it was genuinely used to boost the lifestyles of the needy, that would be different. It isn't! The extra $30 is going to the well-heeled GREEDY - the ones who bought bigger, fancier houses or spent up big on overseas holidays.

    I met one last night. Been around the world 5 times. Now he's below the threshold and taking money from people who've never been outside Australia, but put a little stash away to pay for the home renovations and new car they know they'll need (but now won't be able to have) 15 or 20 years from now.

    Put a sock in it, OG. You have NO IDEA!
    Old Geezer
    23rd Nov 2016
    12:45pm
    What a sad world people live in? Leaving money for their kids and grandkids when they could be using it to enjoy themselves and their family while they are still alive. Just about to take my family on a cruise my treat. Treat them all to a holiday every year.

    Not spending your money in retirement is really just denying yourself the pleasures of retirement.

    Yes it is double dipping when you have enough money to support yourself without robbing the taxpayers as well.

    There is no government trust account for old age . It is welfare paid by the taxpayers like me.

    The world is real to me and I think some people do live in la la land instead.
    PIXAPD
    21st Nov 2016
    8:36am
    RICH retirees to PAY TAX SUGGESTED..... interesting concept...those on the full aged pension not targeted
    Anonymous
    23rd Nov 2016
    11:05am
    Are you really ignorant enough to think that part-pensioners and SFRs are any better off than full pensioners? You'd have to be dumb to think that way - unless you are a Communist and think all earnings should be confiscated to the State and everyone except the privileged left penniless! Perhaps you can't do math?
    Old Geezer
    23rd Nov 2016
    12:48pm
    Of course part pensioners and SFRs are better off than full pensioners. They have capital to fall back on whereas full pensioners have little if any. Makes a big difference when things go pear shaped. A major problem to a full pensioner is a minor inconvenience to a part pensioner of SFR.
    counting pennies
    21st Nov 2016
    8:58am
    That seems to be the consensus between us slightly younger mob,Rainey.There are those who want to spend in upcoming years,because they feel their years of frugality will not serve them as expected.
    Anonymous
    23rd Nov 2016
    7:30am
    It might have been more reasonable to adjust the assets threshold based on age, counting pennies. Those over 75 are unlikely to suffer hardship as a result of the change. Younger retirees might be facing 30 years of rising costs and needs, and the tiny nest egg they are allowed to retain won't be worth much 20 years from now.
    Old Geezer
    23rd Nov 2016
    10:55pm
    Rainey no one that is effected by the asset changes will suffer hardship because if they spend down their assets they will still have the OAP available when the get under the new levels.
    Anonymous
    24th Nov 2016
    1:28pm
    You really are STUPID, OG! Spend down their assets and then have to live on the OAP whether or not it's adequate to meet their personal needs. Many saved KNOWING they would have particular needs that the pension doesn't meet. Now they are being stripped of their savings to give to people who didn't bother to save, and possibly have lesser needs, and when those major needs arise they will not have enough, despite having saved aggressively to ensure they were covered. Only a selfish IDIOT would agree that with a strategy that puts people in that position.
    Mad as Hell
    21st Nov 2016
    2:55pm
    Tax dodging multinationals cost Australia $6 billion a year let's get the pensioners.
    Anonymous
    23rd Nov 2016
    7:35am
    Yep, that's the one!
    Chris B T
    22nd Nov 2016
    9:48am
    There is a major difference between home owner's and non home owner's.
    The non home owner's are already compansated twice for not been a home owner.
    1. Rental Assistance
    2. Allowed more assets.
    Some areas of Australia you can buy a home for less the assets difference given between them.
    Indirectly home owners have a nominal value for your dwelling and are discriminated for it all asset test should be the same, higher value homes have greedy councils to deal with.
    This poor renter can find cheaper rent elsewhere been allowed rental allowence should be more then enough, why should they be allowed to have more assets. Use that amount to buy a home.
    Anonymous
    23rd Nov 2016
    7:25am
    Now there's a common sense response. Thank you Chris BT!
    counting pennies
    22nd Nov 2016
    10:00pm
    Old Geezer,I intend to use my assets to support myself,not spend frivolously.As some of my age are intending.My question was should I continue striving for independence,which will ultimately cost me more than my counterparts who splurge with their boats and holidays.I simply want a lifestyle a little less worrying.
    Anonymous
    23rd Nov 2016
    7:24am
    It's a lost cause, counting pennies, unless you can get to a very high level of savings. Many with a similar goal are now finding the only way to sustain an income equal to the aged pension is to blow a few hundred thousand on a world cruise or a bigger house! What a patently IDIOTIC system!
    Old Geezer
    23rd Nov 2016
    12:38pm
    Rainey you don't need a lot of money if it is invested well to get an income better than the OAP. I do that on less than $400,000. Yes I have other assets but reinvest the return. 5% on $400,000 will give you $20,000 and I do better than that.

    All it takes is patience, education and experience. If you are not prepared to do the hard yards and put your money on interest in the banks then they will use it to make the money that should be yours.

    Money in the bank on interest is my biggest worry as I know that it is losing money most of the time.

    23rd Nov 2016
    7:40am
    Open question to Mr Daley: what will an extra $500 in rent assistance do for very low income earners who are struggling with the high cost of owning the home they spent decades struggling to pay off? Many are WORSE off than renters! Oh, that's right! They can sell the home they worked so hard for and live off the proceeds. That's the thinking of the arsehole privileged who know NOTHING about the lives of battlers whose only asset in old age in the home they worked so hard for and value so highly (despite it's often deteriorating condition!) OG would support that concept!
    counting pennies
    23rd Nov 2016
    8:42pm
    Old Geezer,two things/
    Not everyone Has 400k or more,most women dont of which I am one.
    Assuming your 20k on 400k,which is definitely feasible,isnt it eroded BECAUSE you are self funded i.e arent things more expensive because you arent a pensioner?
    In other words dont you pay more for things such as rego,phone,or haircuts as someone previously mentioned.So in fact you need MORE than a pensioner to afford the same?
    Old Geezer
    23rd Nov 2016
    10:49pm
    I have been doing this for over 10 years now and really haven't seen much difference in my expenditure over that time. Some years I make a lot more than $20,000 so it's accumulates for the lean years.

    My phone and internet costs about half what it did 10 years ago, my electricity currently makes me money whereas 10 years ago it cost me money. Haircuts cost nothing as I bought a some hair clippers years ago and just give myself a trim when I need one. Rego and insurance costs about the same. Food costs less as I eat less as I get older. I grow lots of vegetables and catch a few rabbits. I don't use any heating or cooling. I don't pay for doctors or specialists or take any poisons (prescriptions). Got enough clothes to last me the rest of my life. Get given enough undies and socks throughout the year as gifts.

    I don't even spend that $20,000 most years. I even bought a new car a couple of years ago. I also have to take more than that out of my SMSF every year but I don't need it so just invest it.

    I really can't see why people have so much trouble living on the OAP myself. No wonder you see so many OAPs on cruises and travelling around the country in RVs.

    I guess I learnt to live well within my means early in life and have never done anything different.
    counting pennies
    24th Nov 2016
    3:50am
    I suppose having three others living with me alters my perspective.Perhaps in the intervening years when things improve for them it too will improve.
    I also have done what i could,watertank,no veges,no time to tender due to work ,10 yo car,20 yr old everything in the house.Solar panels,fantastic! Lets just see end Dec.
    old frt
    5th Dec 2016
    7:10am
    well done OG you must have aged in the real world
    Alan
    30th Mar 2017
    10:32am
    This is a much better proposal as people will not sell in order to receive such a benefit. There are significant numbers of people who have artificially reduced their incomes so that they are asset rich and cash flow poor in order to ensure that their children receive a bigger inheritance. The old Age Pension should not be supporting such people.

    I could rearrange my affairs so that I could receive a small pension but believe this is unethical.


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