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Plan Ahead For Your Retirement

Plan Ahead For Your Retirement
Westpac Bank staff Maryangela Berwick (second from right) Mariana Maivalenisau (third from right) assisting members of the public at the Retirement Expo at the Fiji National Provident Fund Downtown Boulevard on April 26, 2018. Photo: Maraia Vula
April 27
11:27 2018

There’s no better time than right now to plan for your retirement. Saving for retire­ment often gets put off as we deal with life’s more pressing demands–marriage, house, children – but each month you delay cuts signifi­cantly into the total savings you have when that day comes. Save early. Save often.

Planning

To get the most out of your retire­ment savings, you should figure out where you want to be and how you’re going to get there.

Since people are living longer than ever, retirement savings need to last longer and work harder.

It’s more important than ever to make smart financial decisions.

If you are starting your retire­ment savings early, you can afford to be aggressive and put money into riskier funds.

If your fund loses value, you have time to let it grow again.

However, if you’re getting close to retirement and suddenly your in­vestments lose 40 per cent of their value, it will have a huge negative impact on your financial comfort in retirement.

Superannuation

The main source of funds in re­tirement for most people is their superannuation.

 

If you earn a salary, it’s the law for your employer to contribute a cer­tain portion of your income to your retirement fund. Superannuation savings are money you can’t touch until you retire and for many of us, they will be our main income once we do finish work for the last time.

Aside from the compulsory su­per savings, there are also lots of things you can do to increase the money you have in retirement:

  • As soon as you start work (for an employer who has a place of busi­ness in Fiji) and are within the age of 15 to 55, then you are eligible to become a compulsory Fiji National Provident Fund member.

However, if you do not qualify to be a compulsory member i.e. cur­rently working and FNPF contri­butions are not being deducted by your employer, then you can join the FNPF Voluntary Membership scheme.

By law your employer is required to deduct a minimum of eight per cent from your salary each pay day and match this with a 10 per cent contribution that is put towards your retirement savings account at FNPF.

If you’re some way from retiring, it’s easy to put superannuation to the back of your mind.

But even contributing small ad­ditional amounts now can help you have a more comfortable retire­ment.

Below are some tips to help you ac­cumulate sufficient funds for your retirement, you will need to:

  • start on a saving and investment plan very earlier in your life;
  • be disciplined enough to set-aside a regular amount constantly (either fortnightly, monthly, quar­terly or annually) for a number of years before retirement;
  • save and invest your money at higher interest rates, at-least high­er than the inflation rate; and,
  • reinvest the income/dividend earned back into the investment to allow compounding to work for you.

About Retirement Expo

Approximately 73 per cent of FNPF members have balances of $10,000 or less.

This statistic has led the Finan­cial Literacy Working Group of the National Financial Inclusion Task­force to partner with the FNPF, the Reserve Bank of Fiji and the UN’s Pacific Financial Inclusion Pro­gramme (PFIP) to create an aware­ness campaign on the dire need to save for retirement.

The Retirement Expo ends today at the FNPF Downtown Boulevard.

Organised by a subcommittee of financial institutions and govern­ment ministries. Members of the public are advised to visit the Expo to get information on retirement planning.

Feedback: maraia.vula@fijisun.com.fj

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