Advisers have assets test top of mind
Wednesday, 9 March 2016 12:54pm

Changes to the Age Pension assets test are top of mind for retirement-focused financial advisers according to the latest data from Challenger.

Although test changes affecting Age Pension eligibility will come in to effect from 1 January 2017, Challenger's technical services team said the issue had topped queries for the 2015 December quarter.

Rounding out the top three queries from financial advisers is the impact of aged care rental income to residents, followed by estate planning considerations around income streams and annuities.

Challenger general manager advice services John Carnevale said social security continues to be top of mind for advisers and their clients considering that about 75% of Australians aged 65 and over qualify for at least a part government pension to supplement their income.

"It's no surprise then that advisers are seeking clarification and support around how their client's strategies and potential Age Pension eligibility will be impacted by the changes," Carnevale said.

"The good news is that advisers can take this opportunity to touch base with their clients to inform them of the changes and review their strategies leading up to 1 January 2017.

"We know that clients would much rather hear about any changes to their financial situation from a trusted adviser first.

"More than anything, it's about being in a position to inform clients, have a conversation about what the changes mean and manage your clients' ongoing expectations."

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