Thursday, January 15, 2009

Lifestyle Newsletter 15 January 2009


Anyone can easily run a second hand book stall at weekend markets.

You source the books you have for sale from charity shops.

You’d buy them for $1 then sell them for $5. A simple fold-away table is all you’ll need initially for your stall.

Your major expense is the $25 fee that you have to pay to each market, each week, for your space.

In four hours, you should be able to sell at least 20 books (revenue $100).

Your expenses for the day would be $20 for stock, and the $25 fee. Profit $55.

Over a year, your profits would be north of $3000.

Refer a Friend – Family, friends and work colleagues can benefit from a continuing flow of detailed case studies after you visit our membership site:


Mary was a qualified nurse, aged 60.

However at her age, there are personal injury risks in that profession so hospitals tend not to hire seniors.

She needed income, and took on some part-time low paid work (from the local council) supporting the elderly in their own homes.

However she needed extra income and it occurred to her that she had ample time to start a hobby business.

Given her own experience, she realised that there must be a population of seniors out there who become “un-employable” at a certain age.

So she resolved to establish a recruitment agency for seniors, working from home with virtually nothing more than a computer.

Fortunately Mary had personality, and went out of her way to promote herself in newspapers that were read by seniors.

She also became passionate that firms could benefit from hiring experience, which helped her promote her hobby business.

Her fees were $25 per annum to be listed on her database, and $300 for a firm to look for suitable employees.

After the first year, she had over 300 seniors registered (revenue $7,500) and 15 employers had paid to look (that was an additional $4,500).

The key ingredients for this hobby to become profitable would be an abundance of personality, and loads of energy.

You would also need to find a large employer who was willing to employ seniors, otherwise you’d have an ethical problem with taking money from registrants without a genuine expectation of being able to match them up. But retail chains could become a major client, as they are often happy to employ seniors in shifts that students don't want.

Refer a Friend – Family, friends and work colleagues can benefit from a continuing flow of detailed case studies after you visit our membership site:


Politicians have finally acknowledged what most of us have known for some time – it will not be possible for superannuation to provide us with an adequate income for 20-25 years of dignified retirement for the vast majority of us.

Which is why I have been urging my private clients to build a portfolio of investment properties.

When the Australian Government announced the review of Australia's tax system in May 2008, the review was to look solely at the current tax system and make recommendations to position Australia to deal with the demographic, social, economic and environmental challenges of the 21st century.

This study – the Henry Review – was to consider (among other topics) the tax benefits afforded to superannuation, but now the terms of reference have been amended to provide for consideration of the adequacy of existing superannuation arrangements.

Of course the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia have long advocated that the employer contributions should be 15%, and the major wealth management company AMP now believes that a target for “adequacy” is 65% of an individual’s pre-retirement living standards.

COTA Over 50s – reflecting the less affluent socio-economics of its membership base - has long advocated a retirement incomes system based on the actual cost of living in modest circumstances commensurate with contemporary Australian standards. A pension of 35% of male total average weekly earnings seems a good place to start, they say.

However none of these institutions have the solution to outliving our wealth, and inflation-protecting our income in retirement.

Which is why investment properties are so attractive.

If you would like me to help you explore your options, feel free to contact me – Bernard Kelly – anytime on


When the aged pension was introduced in 1909, you had to be 65 to qualify – as you do now.

However back then only 5% of the population was aged over 65; today 5% of the population is aged over 85.

Effectively healthier lifestyles and advances in medical science now allow us to live 20 years longer.

But the government can’t afford to pay us all the pension, hence the push to have us fund our own retirement by drawing an allocated pension off our superannuation savings.

However the reality is that, for most of us, super will never be enough.

For an explanation, let’s look at the “Ten Ways to $1,000,000” article in the Financial Review Smart Investor magazine of April 2008.

The No.1 strategy was for a 21 year old (who already had savings of $10,000) to contribute $5,000 every year extra i.e. above the employer’s 9% contribution, until age 65.

The result – “he’ll be a super millionaire by age 70” concludes the article. But there’s no mention of what that $1,000,000 will buy in 50 years time.

It goes without saying that their other nine strategies produced inferior results – so what’s the hope for us who are well advanced in our careers?

Superannuation is not the answer if you’re looking for 20-25 years of dignified retirement, but a portfolio of investment properties is.

This strategy works best if you’re still in the workforce, so that when you retire, you eat your super before touching your investment properties.

So you’ll have to keep working while you put that investment property portfolio in place.

If you would like me to help you explore your options, contact me – Bernard Kelly – anytime at

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