Federal Budget 2024-25 Analysis


Treasurer Jim Chalmers’ 2024 Federal Budget aims to curb inflation sooner than expected, ease current cost-of-living pressures, and strengthen the economy long-term, with over $8.4 billion allocated for immediate relief measures, tax cuts, and student debt waivers. Additionally, nearly $83 billion will be invested in housing, infrastructure, health, and initiatives to create a resilient economy ahead of the upcoming federal election.

Click here for the full summary and what it means for you.

Roses are red, Violets are blue. It’s so romantic, talking money with you.


Money can be a contentious topic in any relationship. Yet, its significance cannot be understated. Among the myriad of issues that couples navigate, financial matters often rank high in terms of importance and potential conflict. Despite its sensitivity, discussing finances openly and honestly with your partner is not only crucial but can also strengthen the bond between you. Let’s delve into why this conversation is so essential.


  1. Establishing Trust and Transparency:

Open communication about finances builds trust and transparency within a relationship. Sharing details about income, debts, savings, and financial goals demonstrates a willingness to be vulnerable and honest with your partner. It lays the foundation for a strong and secure partnership where both parties feel valued and respected.


  1. Aligning Goals and Priorities:

Money touches every aspect of our lives, from daily expenses to long-term aspirations. By discussing finances, couples can ensure that they are on the same page regarding their goals and priorities. Whether it’s saving for a house, planning for retirement, or budgeting for vacations, having these conversations allows partners to align their visions for the future and work together towards common objectives.


  1. Resolving Conflicts and Reducing Stress:

Financial disagreements are a leading cause of relationship stress and conflict. However, avoiding these discussions only exacerbates the problem. By addressing financial issues head-on, couples can identify potential sources of tension and work towards mutually beneficial solutions. Whether it’s creating a budget, renegotiating spending habits, or seeking professional advice, proactive communication can alleviate stress and prevent conflicts from escalating.


  1. Building a Strong Financial Foundation:

Successful financial planning requires teamwork. When couples openly discuss their finances, they can leverage each other’s strengths and expertise to build a strong financial foundation. Whether one partner is more knowledgeable about investments or budgeting, pooling resources and working together allows couples to make informed decisions that benefit both parties in the long run.


  1. Navigating Life’s Transitions:

Life is full of unexpected twists and turns, many of which have financial implications. Whether it’s job loss, illness, or a new addition to the family, discussing finances prepares couples to navigate these transitions together. By planning for contingencies and having open conversations about financial priorities, couples can weather life’s storms with greater resilience and unity.


  1. Cultivating Intimacy and Connection:

While discussing finances may seem mundane, it can actually deepen intimacy and connection within a relationship. Sharing financial goals, dreams, and fears fosters a sense of intimacy and understanding between partners. It requires vulnerability and trust, which are essential components of any healthy relationship.


  1. Strengthening Commitment:

Finally, discussing finances reaffirms a couple’s commitment to each other and their shared future. It signals a willingness to face challenges together and work towards common goals. By openly discussing finances, couples demonstrate their commitment to building a strong and enduring partnership built on trust, communication, and mutual support.


In conclusion, discussing finances with your partner is not just about money—it’s about building a strong and resilient relationship. By fostering trust, aligning goals, resolving conflicts, and cultivating intimacy, couples can navigate the complexities of financial management together. So, don’t shy away from these conversations. Embrace them as an opportunity to strengthen your bond and lay the groundwork for a secure and prosperous future together.


If you are ready to discuss your financial future get in contact with one of our Advisers today by giving us a call on (03) 5229 0577.


The advice on this site is of a general nature only and has not been tailored to your personal circumstances. Please seek personal advice prior to acting on this information.

June Newsletter 2023


As we welcome winter and approach the end of the financial year it is the perfect time to get your financial affairs in order. It is a great time to set yourself up for success in the new financial year and reassess your goals and budget.

In our June Newsletter you’ll find some strategies to get you started, along with some tips on transitioning into retirement and if a testamentary trust is right for you and your loved ones.

Read more

May Newsletter 2023


While we await the delivery of the Federal Budget by Treasurer Jim Chalmers on May 9, we are keeping our eyes on the cash rate decision from the Reserve Bank of Australia which many predict will be another pause.

In our latest newsletter we explore how an emergency fund delivers peace of mind, May’s market movements and resident superstar Ash Irwin talks about credit scores.

Click here to read more

It turns out Millennials are financially savvy after all…

A recent University of Sydney study has explored the myth around Millennials being a group of indulgent spenders who sacrifice their ability to save towards purchasing their first home because they cannot go without their smashed avo on toast.

Researchers at The University of Sydney have completed a research project titled “Pathways to home ownership in an age of uncertainty”, undertaken for the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHUIR).  The research examines how young householders aged 25-34 in Sydney and Perth are adapting their living arrangements, spending and saving behaviours to be able to buy a home.

Traditionally, people in the 25 to 34 age bracket would be ready to purchase, or have already purchased, their first home.  The study found that approximately 40% of respondents in Sydney and 47% in Perth have already become homeowners.  When comparing the current Millenials against Generation X, recorded at 62% and Baby Boomers, recorded at 66%, you can see that home ownership is not being achieved at the same level it has in the past.

Furthermore, the survey provided financial diaries to 20 households to explore the complexities of spending and saving habits within this age bracket.  Dr Troy, Senior Lecturer in Urbanism at the Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning stated “The diaries confirmed that young adults are actively using strategies to support saving, such as minimising discretionary spending and paying ahead on utility bills.   They’re not spending much on eating out, entertainment or going on holidays, with the most common saving strategies being cooking at home – including relying on meals of 2-minute noodles! – and spending less on clothing and household items.  Instead, young adults are focused on paying reoccurring items such as food, petrol and debts, with the biggest challenges being the large, irregular, and often unexpected, expenditures such as car repairs and professional insurances”.

Acknowledging that past generations have also faced challenges, it is clear there will be a shift for the current, and likely future, generations in the way they grow and hold their wealth.  For some, a large percentage of their wealth may no longer be held within the family home.  While that idea may buck the long held thinking of older generations, this does not make the situation a doom and gloom forecast.  The positive message found in this survey is the level of financial goal setting and the display of dedication and discipline applied to build savings.  At Income Solutions, we believe the ability to set and achieve financial goals is paramount to building a financially secure future.  A financially secure future is achievable regardless of your home owner status, and the sooner you start, the greater the possibilities.  To understand more, request a copy of our Common Sense Investing webinar, or request an obligation free meeting with one of our Financial Advisers.




March Newsletter 2023

Autumn is here and with it the return of our Common Sense Investing information evenings for the first time post Covid. We are so excited and can’t wait to welcome everyone back into our auditorium, all of the details are in the March newsletter with the first presentation on Wednesday 29th March at 6:00pm.

Also in our newsletter we touch on the importance of being flexible when planning for retirement and the new star rating system for aged care making family choices easier when moving a loved one into aged care accommodation.

Read more

2022 Year in review

The year began on an optimistic note, as we finally began to emerge from Covid restrictions. Then Russia threw a curve ball that reverberated around the world and suddenly people who had never given a thought to the Reserve Bank were waiting with bated breath for its monthly interest rate announcements.

2022 was the year of rising interest rates to combat surging inflation, war in Ukraine and recession fears. These factors combined to create cost-of-living pressures for households and a downturn in share and bond markets.

Super funds also suffered their first calendar year loss since 2011. Ratings group Chant West estimates the median growth fund fell about 4 percent last year.

The big Picture

Even though investors have come to expect unpredictable markets, nobody could have predicted what unfolded in 2022.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February triggered a series of unfortunate events for the global economy and investment markets. It disrupted energy and food supplies, pushing up prices and inflation.

Inflations sits around 7 to 11 precent in most advanced countries, with Australia and the US at the low end of that range and the Euro area at the higher end.

As a result, central banks began aggressively lifting interest rates to dampen demand and prevent a price and wages spiral.

Rising inflation and interest rates

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) lifted rates eight times, taking the target cash rate from 0.1 percent in May to 3.1 percent in December. This quickly flowed through to mortgage interest rates, putting a dampener on consumer sentiment.

Australia remains in a better position than most, with unemployment below 3.5 percent and wages growth of 3.1 percent running well behind inflation.

Despite the geopolitical challenges, Australia’s economic growth increased to 5.9% in the September quarter before contracting to an estimated 3 percent by year’s end, in line with most of our trading partners.

Volatile share markets

Share investors endured a nail-biting year, as markets wrestled with rising interest, inflation, and the war in Ukraine.

Global shares plunged in October on interest rate and recession anxiety only to snap back late in the year on hopes that interest rates may be near their peak. The US market led the way down, finishing 19 percent lower, due to its exposure to high-tech stocks and the Federal Reserve’s aggressive interest rate hikes. Chinese shares (down 15 percent) also had a tough time as strict Covid lockdowns shut down much of its economy.

Australian shares performed well by comparison, down just 7 percent, thanks to strong commodity prices and the Reserve Bank’s relatively moderate interest rate hikes.

Energy and utilities stocks were strong due to the impact of the war in Ukraine on oil and gas prices. On the flip side, the worst performers were information technology, real estate and consumer discretionary stocks as consumers reacted to cost-of-living pressures.

Property slowdown

After peaking in May, national home values fell sharply as the Reserve Bank began ratcheting up interest rates. The CoreLogic home value index fell 5.3% in 2022, the first calendar year decline since the global financial crisis of 2008.

As always though, price movements were not uniform. Sydney (-12 percent), Melbourne (-8 percent) and prestige capital city properties generally led the downturn. Bucking the trend, prices continued to edge higher in Adelaide (up to 10 percent), Perth (3.6 percent), Darwin (4.3 percent) and many regional areas.

Rental returns outpaced home prices, as high interest rates, demographic shifts and low vacancy rates pushed rents up 10.2 percent in 2022. Gross yields recovered to pre-Covid levels, rising to 3.78 percent in December on a combination of strong rental growth and falling housing values. However, its likely net yields fell as mortgage repayments increased.

Despite the downturn, CoreLogic reports housing values generally remain above pre-COVID levels. At the end of December, capital cities combined were still 11.7 percent above their March 2020 levels, while regional markets were a massive 32.2 percent higher.

Looking ahead

While the outlook for 2023 remains challenging, there are signs that inflation may have peaked and that central banks are nearing the end of their rate hikes.

Even so, the risk of recession is still high although less so in Australia where the RBA has been less aggressive in applying the interest rate brakes.

Issues for investors to watch out for in the year ahead are:

  • A protracted conflict in Ukraine
  • A new COVID wave in China which could further disrupt supply chains across the Australia economy, and
  • Steeper than expected falls in Australian housing prices which could lead to forced sales and dampen consumer spending.

If you would like to discuss your investment strategy in the light of prevailing economic conditions, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Note: all share market figures are live prices as at 31 December 2022 sourced from: https://tradingeconomics.com/stocks.
All property figures are sourced from: https://www.corelogic.com.au/news-research/news/2022/corelogic-home-value-index-australian-housing-values-down-5.3-over-2022







Dimensions of an Asset

In this article we will be breaking down the dimensions of an asset. The core two dimensions of an asset are the Income the asset generates together with the asset’s Capital Value and worth.

When viewing the Income dimension of an asset, we need to outline the three main Income producing asset categories:

Property: generating an income through the rental market
Shares: generating an income by paying dividends through the share market
Cash: will generate an income by paying interest

When focusing on the Capital Value dimension of an asset it is worth noting:

Property: the true capital value only known when the property
is sold
Shares: The capital value of a share is known on any given weekday
Cash: The capital value of cash does not rise or fall

At Income Solutions we believe that people focus too much on the Capital Value of an asset or investment and not enough on the assets Income producing capabilities.

If you concentrate on the first dimension of the asset, the Income it produces, you will have a far greater chance of building a Capital Base that will provide you with an Income to support your life…. forever!

For further details on the Dimensions of an Asset watch the following video by Income Solutions Advisor, David Ramsay: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AqlhNmYHjXw

Building a Lifestyle

The first step in planning for the lifestyle that you want to live is to build your capital base (the money and assets you own) to where it will not only fund your lifestyle in the short term but will generate enough ongoing revenue that your income will continue to build and be replaced, thus providing you with an income for many more years to come together with creating a foundation for intergenerational wealth.

In speaking to people about what is important to them many of their main priorities include.

~ Family
~ Travel
~ Home
~ Entertainment
~ Leisure

It is crucial to identify whatever it is that is important to you as this will assist you in answering the core vital questions, How Much? Where from? and When?

Whatever your answers to these questions maybe and whatever priorities you identify when answering these vital questions, remember you only get one shot at life and it is worth planning for!

For further details regarding planning for your Lifestyle click on the following video link to hear from Income Solutions Principal, David Ramsay:

An Income for Life

Building your capital base is important as this is what will provide you with a passive, worry free, consistent and tax effective increasing income ~ An Income that will provide you with choices and options into the future for you and your family.
In looking closely at what makes up your Capital Base it is worth noting that typically your Capital Base comprises of one or more of the following:
~ Superannuation
~ Rental Properties
~ Term Deposits
~ Shares
An important point to make is that most people are focused on the capital value of their assets and often ignore the assets Income capabilities, but it is imperative to remember that it is the income provided by the asset within the capital base that provides you with ongoing funds and an income that will assist you with creating the lifestyle you choose.
When investing to build your capital base that will provide you with an income stream it is vital to consider that into the future ‘How Much is it going to take to do everything I wish to plan for’? Further, remembering that there are only 3 real asset classes that will produce an income, consisting of.
~ Cash
~ Property
~ Shares
Income Solutions has a proven and focused investment strategy that clearly details how our clients can build their capital base to increase and maximize long term income capabilities.
Please click on to the following short video title: ‘Building Your Capital Base’ to hear from Income Solutions Principal, David Ramsay providing further details:


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