New Chair Appointed – State Sports Centres Trust

New Chair Appointed – State Sports Centres Trust

Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula announced the appointment of finance expert Chris Jackson as the incoming chair of the State Sport Centres Trust.

The Trust is responsible for governing the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre (MSAC), the State Netball Hockey Centre and Lakeside Stadium.

Mr Jackson is the founder of Accurate Financial Consultants Pty Ltd, an established tax consulting firm with clients in Australia and overseas, which has gone on to merge with our very own McQueen Group. Mr Jackson has wide experience across the finance sector, including serving as the chair of Private Banking Service, a franchise of Bendigo and Adelaide Bank.

Mr Jackson will replace Brett Moore as Trust chair from 1 September, for a term of three years.

Mr Pakula also announced the appointment of former Victorian senator Michael Ronaldson as a member of the Trust.

Mr Ronaldson has more than 40 years of experience in the legal profession, corporate governance and government and was a partner at Ramsay, Gaunt and Fraser before serving in the Senate from 2004 to 2016. His ministerial appointments included Special Minister of State, Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Centenary of ANZAC.

Mr Pakula thanked Mr Moore for his 10 years of service to the Trust, including his role in executing the Government’s $64.6 million State Netball and Hockey Centre redevelopment.

The redevelopment works are well under way and will cement Parkville as the home for netball and hockey in Australia with six new indoor netball courts replacing the existing outdoor courts, a new indoor hockey facility and a high-performance strength and conditioning gym.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula, and to State Sport Centres Trust incoming chair Chris Jackson

Stretching Your Travel Budget Further

Stretching Your Travel Budget Further

Many Australians will soon be jetting or sailing away on their annual overseas getaway. Unfortunately, the value of the Australian dollar has been falling against the US dollar, British pound, euro, yen and even the Indonesian rupiah. Here are some suggestions on how to maximise your travel budget and have a memorable holiday. 

Get the right cover

Taking out travel insurance is a sensible precaution, but you don’t want to pay more for it than necessary. Or pay for it, then discover it’s worthless.

Always read the fine print about limits, excesses and exclusions. As with all insurance, the more comprehensive the policy, the more it is likely to cost. If you’re motorcycling down Route 66, the expensive policy with greater coverage is probably a good investment. On the flip side, if you plan to laze away the days on a Fijian beach, you may be able to get away with a more basic policy.

While it’s convenient to arrange insurance via a travel agent, airline or credit card, it can pay to shop around for the best price and most relevant cover. Some credit cards come with free travel insurance but, be warned, the coverage is often modest.

And while your health, car or home insurer may also offer you a discount on travel insurance, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’re getting value for money. Thanks to comparison sites, it’s now easy to get quotes from a variety of insurers. So do shop around before making a final decision.

Go online

Travel agents have their uses but booking your own flights and accommodation can save hundreds, even thousands, of dollars.

Hotels are great if you want to keep things simple and stress-free. But if you’re travelling as a group or wanting to immerse yourself in the city outside the walls of a hotel, Airbnb may be a cheaper alternative that gives you your own space to relax.

Thanks to the internet, you may even be able to arrange an international home-swap although this can take time. The two most popular sites for this are lovehomeswap.com and homeexchange.com.

A warning though – the digital age isn’t all upside for holidaymakers. If you use your mobile while abroad, keep an eye on your data usage and phone calls, so you don’t return home to eye-watering international roaming charges. Consider buying a local SIM card once you reach your destination (it will have a pay-as-you-go option or a flat rate for a set period). And only use your phone when you have access to free Wi-Fi at hotels, cafes and airports.

Choose the best payment option

Most travel experts these days suggest you carry a ‘mixed wallet’ for overseas trips, with a combination of some or all the following:

  • Cash. You can exchange your Australian dollars for foreign currency before or after departure. Typically, the more conveniently located the money changer, the higher the commission. (This is why savvy travellers avoid changing money at airports.)
  • Pre-paid travel cards. These are available at places such as banks and post offices. You pay to deposit specific amounts of foreign currency onto the card. You can then use the card to make purchases and withdraw cash from ATMs in your destination country. ATM fees are lower than if you used your regular bank cards, but you are generally also charged fees for loading up the card, using it to buy something in a currency other than the one it’s loaded up with and deactivating the card.
  • Your Australian debit or credit card – the upside of using these is convenience. The downside is having to pay significant withdrawal fees, currency conversion fees, foreign transaction fees and cash advance fees.

Dodge the ‘tourist tax’

It’s also worth keeping in mind that you can save money and get a richer experience of the country you’re visiting by acting like a local rather than a tourist.

For instance, buy alcohol from a supermarket rather than ordering it on room service. Catch public transport and dine where the locals eat rather than at overpriced restaurants next to major attractions.

Watching your travel spending does not mean you have to compromise on fantastic experiences and with a little bit of planning, you can still enjoy your overseas trip without breaking the bank.

McQueen Financial Group is a corporate authorised representative of Total Financial Solutions Limited. AFSL No. 224 954, ABN 94 003 771 579. This information is of a general nature only and does not consider your investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs. You should not act on any information in this report without first consulting a professional investment adviser in order to ascertain whether the information and any investment decision is appropriate. This information is believed to be accurate however no warranty of accuracy or reliability is given in relation to any advice or information contained, and neither TFSA or its Representatives and officers, agents or employees of either of the aforementioned shall not be held liable for any loss or damage whatsoever arising in any way for any representation, act or omission, whether express or implied (including responsibility to any persons by reason of negligence).

On Thursday the 24th of October, the McQueen team had the pleasure of commemorating the twenty five year anniversary of McQueen Group. Celebrating together with our top clients, we were able to have an evening dedicated to recognizing the success of the company and pay tribute to those who have played a vital role in the growth and prosperity of the company throughout the years.

Angus McQueen, Founder, was able to visualize his success through a room filled with people, staff and clients alike, all bought together thanks to his dedication and hard work. Starting the company in 1994, many adversities have been faced, however Angus’s determination has allowed the company to thrive and grown into what we see today.

The evening dazzled with smiles from familiar faces, bringing together friends and family, highlighting the value of McQueen, where client relationships have formed into life long friendships. We were honored to have our long term client John Lazzari speak on the evening, capturing the crowd while sharing his story and experiences. Lazzari has been a part of McQueen since…. And holds such trust and dedication to have planned out the next twenty years with us. We are honored by his commitment, and cherish the ability to continue to support him through the following chapters in his life.

One person particularly proud of Angus and the McQueen company, is Don McQueen. Expressing his commendation through a toast, noting where the company started, and how much has been achieved since. Don, with his own professional experience in financial planning, allows him to reflect on the foundations of the company with admiration for what Angus built, and what the team as a whole have shaped and accomplished.

How much does it cost to raise a child in Australia?

How much does it cost to raise a child in Australia?

Raising a child will provide you with countless experiences that money can’t buy. But it is still an expensive business. Here’s your guide to the likely cost of raising a child in Australia.

With over 300,000 babies born in Australia every year according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, more and more families are adapting to life with little ones. We run through a few of the big milestones to help you calculate the likely cost of kids.

Parental Leave

Generally, the financial impact of having a baby begins before it is born. A fantastic first step for any parents-to-be is to think about parental leave – how much would you like to take and how much could you afford? After all, your little bundle of joy won’t just cost money to look after, you’re also likely to receive a reduced income from one or both parents depending on the arrangements you choose to make.

One simple way to start planning is to use ASIC’s parental leave calculator to establish your likely income over the course of parental leave. You can change the parameters of the ASIC calculator to assess how your earnings could be affected by taking more or less time off.
Child care

For many parents, going back to work after a maternity or paternity break can be a difficult decision, but it’s usually financially necessary for one or both parents to resume their employment.

Returning to work will likely mean that the household income is increased, but when figuring out when to take the leap, consider the likely cost of child care for your little ones. There are a number of different types of child care to consider, as CareforKids.com.au outlines, all range significantly in cost. As well as listing approximate costs on the website, CareforKids.com.au also has a tool to help you calculate the approximate cost of your preferred type of child care.

There are government benefits available for families. To find out more and to learn about what benefit may apply to you, check the Australian Government’s Family Assistance Guide.

Education

Giving your child a great education is top of the list for most parents, and whether your child attends public or private school, the ongoing cost of education is something to keep in mind.

Aside from any tuition costs, there are also uniforms, sports clubs, school trips and lunchboxes to think about.

Ultimately, the cost of education depends on a number of factors, so if you’d like to find out more about your situation ASIC’s MoneySmartsite has plenty of information on calculating how much your family may need to save.

Living Expenses

Finally, there are the everyday living expenses to consider. Research by ASIC in 2015/2016 suggests that the average couple without children spends $1,572/week to $1,833/week when the couple has children under five, and $2,085/week once the children are between 5-14 years old.

Holiday costs increase too, with the average family in Australia saving $77 per week for their next trip away, according to the same ASIC research.

Having children is the most remarkable and fulfilling experience, but it’s also a huge amount of responsibility. Talk to us and we can help ensure you have properly budgeted and planned your finances into the future to make sure that you are prepared and confident to raise a child.

This article was originally posted here:

https://www.aiavitality.com.au/vmp-au/latest_news?selDate=&article=planning_on_a_new_years_revolution

McQueen Financial Group is a corporate authorised representative of Total Financial Solutions Limited. AFSL No. 224 954, ABN 94 003 771 579.This information is of a general nature only and does not take into account your investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs. You should not act on any information in this report without first consulting a professional investment adviser in order to ascertain whether the information and any investment decision is appropriate. This information is believed to be accurate however no warranty of accuracy or reliability is given in relation to any advice or information contained, and neither TFSA or its Representatives and officers, agents or employees of either of the aforementioned shall not be held liable for any loss or damage whatsoever arising in any way for any representation, act or omission, whether express or implied (including responsibility to any persons by reason of negligence).

Market Update presented by Paul Moore from PM Capital Companies Fund

 

We regularly meet with the best of breed fund managers to review, analyse and authenticate their offering with the view to building quality portfolios for our clients.

McQueen Financial Group is a corporate authorised representative of Total Financial Solutions Limited. AFSL No. 224 954, ABN 94 003 771 579

This information is of a general nature only and does not take into account your investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs. You should not act on any information in this report without first consulting a professional investment adviser in order to ascertain whether the information and any investment decision is appropriate. This information is believed to be accurate however no warranty of accuracy or reliability is given in relation to any advice or information contained, and neither TFSA or its Representatives and officers, agents or employees of either of the aforementioned shall not be held liable for any loss or damage whatsoever arising in any way for any representation, act or omission, whether express or implied (including responsibility to any persons by reason of negligence).