When planning your finances for aged care, there are many aspects to consider—for example, pensions, superannuation, and retirement planning. So, it’s beneficial to seek independent financial advice before deciding how to pay for your aged care.
Knowing where to start can be confusing, but there is help available. There are organisations, services, and tools that can offer guidance and support.
Organisations that can help
There are a number of organisations that offer free services that can inform you about things like how to build savings, how to prepare for retirement, and what options you have with your pension.
Services Australia’s Aged Care Specialist Officers (ACSOs) and Financial Information Service (FIS) provide free services to help you make informed decisions about investment and financial issues for your current and future needs. ACSOs can also help you with aged care information.
Services Australia’s ACSOs and FIS officers are not financial planners and do not give or sell advice or investment products.
Information on key financial topics
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission’s MoneySmart website provides information, hints, tips and tools to help you manage your money. It’s a one-stop-shop to get fast answers to your money questions. Apart from information and seminars, it offers financial calculators and resources to help you:
- create budgets and saving plans
- find out how much superannuation you are likely to have when you retire
- understand your sources of income for retirement.
Information on key financial topics
National Debt Helpline
Professional services that can help
The MoneySmart website has some valuable resources to help you manage your money, and it can also direct you to professional services like financial advisers, counsellors, and legal advice.
Financial advisers can help with retirement planning, wealth management, savings planning, superannuation, and portfolio administration. They can also give advice on managed funds and other financial products.
It’s important to choose the right financial adviser for your situation. The MoneySmart website has information on how to choose the best financial adviser for your needs.
Helpful links on seeking financial advice
If you’re having money problems, you can get help from a free and confidential financial counsellor. A financial counsellor can help you:
- negotiate with your creditors if you have debts
- organise your finances, and
- create a budget.
Community organisations are funded to provide these services across Australia. Find a financial counsellor near you using the MoneySmart website.
Free legal advice
If you are in debt and have legal problems, you may not be able to afford a private solicitor. However, community legal centres and Legal Aid agencies offer free legal advice. Find out more about free legal advice on the MoneySmart website.
Tools and information
There are many tools available to help you with different aspects of your finances, such as:
Budgeting and saving
Superannuation and retirement planning
Borrowing and credit
- Reverse mortgage calculator
Find out how much your debt will increase over time if you take out a reverse mortgage.
- Home Equity Access Scheme
The Home Equity Access Scheme is a voluntary reverse equity mortgage through Services Australia that offers older Australians a fortnightly income stream to supplement their retirement income. The payments may be made:
- for a short period while your income and assets are being rearranged, or
- for an indefinite period.
Financial Information Service officers can give you information about the Home Equity Access Scheme.
Payment and service eligibility
- Payment and Service Finder
Find out what payments and services you may be eligible for.
- International Services
If you get the Age Pension and you’ve lived outside Australia before, you may be able to claim a pension from another country. Centrelink’s International Services can help you get Australian social security payments while you’re overseas, and can help you claim a foreign pension.