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Apex's top 10 money tips for the silly season

The end of the year often brings about a mixed bag of emotions. According to the Commission for Financial Capability (CFFC), a government-funded organisation helping New Zealanders get ahead financially, one in four Kiwis felt pressure from their family or community to spend more on Christmas than they would like to. Being in the financial services sector, we firmly believe that a great Christmas doesn’t mean breaking the bank, so we reached out to our fellow colleagues for some Christmas mone...

November 12, 2019

Rules for a smarter mortgage

We first published an article similar to this one in 2017, but these rules are still very relevant today. With interest rates at an all-time low, the best thing you can do is take this opportunity to reduce your debt in a smarter way. So here are our top rules for a smarter mortgage. Have a strategy Our home is often our most valuable asset, so it certainly makes sense to keep our home loan in check. Having a plan around repayment time frames and amounts, loan terms, forecasted life events and p...

November 5, 2019

What you need to know about KiwiSaver Tax

We understand that talking about taxes can be less than interesting. But understanding how you investments are taxed means that you get to maximise the money you are investing.This also applies to the 2.5 million KiwiSaver members in New Zealand. This year, the IRD send out letter to over 120,000 Kiwis telling them they had been paying the wrong tax. Did you know that you are not entitled to a refund if you have been paying a higher tax rate? Read on to understand what it all means and how to ge...

October 18, 2019

Are your children really protected?

One of the biggest reasons we take out insurance cover is to protect our loved ones. We want to make sure that if anything happens to us and we are unable to work and earn an income, there would still be food in the table and bills would be paid. But what would happen if your children got seriously ill? Most parent would want to take time off to be with their children - and 5 days of annual leave might not cover it. If you wanted to stop working, could you afford it?...

October 10, 2019

How ethical is your KiwiSaver investment?

In 2016, KiwiSaver funds stopped investing in nuclear weapons and cluster bombs. This is a great step in the right direction, but it got us thinking about the other types of shares our funds invest in. It seems like the two approaches are to either: 1. Not invest in bad stuff (negative screen) or 2. Proactively invest in good stuff (positive screen) Most funds in NZ screen out cluster munitions, anti-personnel mines, chemical weapons, nuclear weapons, whaling and the manufacture of tobacco....

September 25, 2019

3 questions to ask when re-fixing your mortgage rate

Low mortgage rates are all over the news at the moment. We are experiencing the lowest rates we've seen in a long time. Some economist predict that the Official Cash Rate (OCR) could go down even further, which might push mortgage rates further down. In this environment, a lot of our clients are thinking about re-fixing their mortgage. If your rates are coming up for re-fixing, here are 3 questions to ask yourself. Take this opportunity to think about your mortgage and what could work better for...

September 10, 2019

Are you right for your KiwiSaver investment or is your KiwiSaver investment right for you?

1. You didn’t: you were allocated a default provider by the IRD If you do not choose your own provider, the IRD randomly allocates you to a default provider and they will automatically invest your money into a low performing default fund. They will also put you on the highest tax rate and simply wait for you to make a choice as to what you want to do.2a. You did: the bank teller signed you upThe bank staff can only provide advice on the funds their bank manages and a lot of the time they don...

September 2, 2019

Financially Independent Retire Early – F.I.R.E by Hannah McQueen

As clients of Apex we would like to extend an offer for tickets to Hannah McQueen’s ‘Financially Independent Retire Early – F.I.R.E’ nationwide seminar series. In the words of Hannah herself – “I can’t think of too many things more frustrating than working harder, but not getting ahead any faster. If you’re going to work harder – you want it to be worth it.” So if you’re busting a gut but still staring down the barrel of decades tied to the bank, it’s time to ‘Set FIRE ...

August 22, 2019

Is improving your health and wellbeing important to you? Join the AIA Vitality revolution!

AIA Vitality is an award-winning health and wellbeing program exclusive to AIA clients, just launched by AIA to the New Zealand market. AIA Vitality’s proven approach takes you on a journey to better health – where you get to know your health, improve it and enjoy the rewards for doing so. Here’s how it works After joining, you earn AIA Vitality points by learning about and improving your current state of health in areas such as nutrition, exercise and mental wellbeing. The more points you...

August 5, 2019

How small business owners can manage stress

If you are just starting out as a business owner, and have work/life imbalance, you’re not alone. A recent survey commissioned by Prospa found that nearly half (49%) of small business owners in New Zealand are working between six and seven days a week on their business, with one in five (20%) working seven days. The vast majority (88%) of those surveyed also feel they miss out on quality time with their family because they’re distracted by their business, with four in five – 81% –&n...

August 1, 2019

7 tips to make up for a sluggish start on retirement savings

Do you know how much money you will need for retirement?  Recent analysis by the Westpac Massey University Fin-Ed Centre, revealed that a couple wanting to live in a major city and have a comfortable retirement would need to save a lump sum of $785,000 at retirement - and have a mortgage free home. This figure can certainly be intimidating if you have very little money saved. We are lucky to have NZ Superannuation when we turn 65, but this is only $411 per week. Do you think you can afford ...

July 22, 2019

5 tips to get the most out of your KiwiSaver savings

For most New Zealanders, KiwiSaver will be their first introduction to investment. It’s a great tool to save for your retirement and it can also help you get into your first home. However, as with any investment, there are things you can do to make your money work harder for you. It’s about how and where you invest, about the tax rate you pay and about making sure you benefit from what the Government is offering to KiwiSaver members. With over 2.8 million Kiwis in KiwiSaver, it doesn’t mat...

July 10, 2019

Is your KiwiSaver account in the wrong place?

We come across many KiwiSaver members that don't know how much money they have in their fund or who is looking after their money.  Choosing the right fund for where you are in life is very important. Maybe you want to withdraw for a house or set yourself up for retirement. These goals affect which fund you should keep your money in. Things like making sure you are getting the annual Government Contribution and paying the correct tax rate help you maximise your KiwiSaver nestegg. Take a...

July 4, 2019

This is Kate's story

Plenty of New Zealanders regularly question whether they should keep paying their insurance premiums. We understand it gets hard at times to manage the cost. But we know first hand the difference insurance can make. Kate’s[1] story is a testament to that. Kate and her husband took out life cover and trauma cover back in 2009. From the start they were great believers in insurance and how important it was to protect their family. And insurance did change their lives. 5 years after putting their ...

July 1, 2019

Why do insurance premiums go up and what can you do

We understand when our clients get frustrated when their premiums increase. Although we have no control on how or when insurance companies review their premiums, we can help you understand why and think of options if the cost becomes hard to manage. Why do premiums increase? For most insurance policies, premiums are calculated based on age, gender and smoking status. These all influence your likelihood of making a claim. From the insurers point of view the younger you are the chea...

June 18, 2019

Kiwis gamble on financial risk: New research launched by the Financial Services Council

New research commissioned by the Financial Services Council (FSC) has revealed many New Zealanders are taking a high stakes gamble on managing risk. The research ‘Risking Everything’ carried out by Horizon Research looked at New Zealanders attitudes to financial risk and how they protect their wealth should the worst happen. Over 2,000 Kiwis were interviewed. “Risking Everything found that although most Kiwis are aware of their financial risks, they aren’t doing much about it”, said Ri...

June 12, 2019

KiwiSaver members: don't miss out on the $521 Government Contribution

Will you be getting a $521 top up to your KiwiSaver account? KiwiSaver members are eligible for a Government Contribution each year, formerly known as Member Tax Credit. Basically, for every dollar you put into your KiwiSaver account, the Government puts in 50c, up to a maximum of $521.43. You must contribute $1,042.86 annually to qualify for the maximum payment of $521.43. If you have been contributing for at least one year through your employer at the 3% rate and you earn over $34,766 per annu...

May 20, 2019

KiwiSaver changes in 2019 and what they mean for you

Important changes were made to KiwiSaver recently. These developments, to be implemented in three stages, will give more people a chance to join KiwiSaver and will also provide greater flexibility on how we manage our funds. Here’s what you need to know. More contribution options Two new contribution rates have been added – 6% and 10%. KiwiSaver members can now choose to contribute 3%, 4%, 6%, 8% or 10% from their wages. These options give you greater flexibility over your savings. If you ar...

May 6, 2019

When rates are low… it’s not the rate you pay, it’s the rate you pay it off

Mortgage rates are currently as low as they have ever been with some banks advertising rates under 4% for up to 3 years fixed. You certainly want to make sure you have a competitive rate on your loan, but we encourage our clients to see this low-rate environment as an opportunity to shed years of their mortgage by keeping your repayments up. How does it work? The only thing you need to do, when re-fixing for a lower rate, is keep your repayments the same as what you have been paying on your prev...

May 2, 2019

This is why we do what we do

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April 8, 2019

What to do when your bank says no

We are often asked to assist clients who have unique circumstances that don’t fit into ‘normal’ bank criteria. Over the past 10 years there has been an increasing number of ‘non-bank’ lenders in New Zealand who are able to help clients when the banks say no....

April 1, 2019

What does Clients First mean?

“Client First” is what you should expect from an adviser who genuinely cares about you. Expect nothing less than to have tailored financial advice that suits your particular needs. Good advisers are focused on delivering the best client outcomes – it should be a philosophy at the center of everything they do. Kiwis are a diverse bunch, so your adviser should understand that the best client outcome can mean different things to different people. A good adviser truly wants to help you make be...

February 27, 2019

Is a home renovation right for me?

Home renovations can seem like a fun challenge. However, before you run to the shed for a sledge hammer, let’s have at look at what you need to consider first. To stay or to move on….It’s highly unlikely that you’re only going to have one home in your lifetime. That’s because there are just so many changes that we go through which impact on the home that will work best for us. School zones, career changes, growing families, and stage of life can all mean a change of home is approp...

February 25, 2019

Love to ride: Auckland Bike Challenge 2019

It’s February! This means it’s time for the Auckland Bike Challenge again. The Challenge is a free, fun competition to see which workplaces can get the most people to ride a bike for 10 minutes or more in the month of February. 497 organisations in Auckland are participating in this challenge and we are proud to be one of these workplaces encouraging our staff to get on a bike and be active. At the time of writing, we are in the 1st position in the “Finance Industry Auckland (20 - 49 staff...

February 19, 2019

Is it a good idea to buy now, pay later?

Buy now, pay later schemes are on the rise. These schemes allow consumers to buy something – anything from new shoes, homeware to flights – without paying for it upfront. Instead, the cost of the items is spread across 4 to 6 weeks, with the client committed to make regular repayments. Sounds good, right? However, if you look at the big picture, you can see that you are still taking on debt and that there are penalties if you don’t pay in time. What’s the appeal? First and foremost is in...

February 12, 2019 Posts 1-25 of 230 | Page next
 

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