A Christmas Message

I’d like to take this opportunity to wish all my readers a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.  I trust you have enjoyed my posts throughout the year and look forward to an even bigger and better 2013.

Next year will see a fresh new look for the blog, along with some exciting new initiatives around content to further engage with the SMSF community.  I’m also very excited about the launch of our new SMSF online course, SMSF101 in early February 2012, a joint initiative of The SMSF Academy and Money101.  With the course having recently received 49 CPD points from the SMSF Professionals Association of Australia (SPAA), I believe it will be a ‘game-changer’ for the industry in the delivery of education and training.  Most importantly,  it will provide individuals with a fantastic pathway towards becoming an SMSF specialist.

I look forward to you joining me again in 2013.

All the very best,

Aaron Dunn


WEBINAR – SMSF limited recourse borrowing arrangements


The topic of borrowing in super continues to gain momentum with a growing number of SMSFs looking to establish limited recourse borrowing arrangements (LRBAs) to acquire property.

The next SMSF Academy webinar will discuss the latest issues impacting LRBAs including:

  • Understanding the Commissioner’s views in the final ruling, SMSFR 2012/1: application of key concepts with LRBAs
  • Update on the proposed licensing requirements
  • Considerations of insurance with LRBAs
  • Latest ATO issues with related party loans, interest rates, multiple loans, off-the-plan acquisitions and much more

Find out more and register here


Launching the Top10 SMSF strategies for 2012-13

I’m pleased to announce the launch of my Top10 SMSF strategies for 2012-13 webinar to be held at 11am AEST, Thursday, 23 August 2012.  With more than 410 attendees to last year’s session, this is the most anticipated SMSF webinar for 2012!!

In addition to the webinar, all attendees will receive a free copy of the Top10 SMSF strategies eBook, which will be available in flip-book for the first time, allowing for users to read on PC, iPad, iPhone and android devices.  Last year’s eBook had more than 1,000 downloads, with this year’s book providing more than 70 pages of content on each strategy, their the key issues and considerations when implementing.

This year’s Top 10 includes a diverse range of strategies across the entire life-cycle of SMSFs – from contributions, to investing including using borrowings, running pensions, reserves and estate planning.  This year sees a growing emphasis to pension strategies as more baby-boomers move into draw-down phase in their SMSFs.  There are however some fantastic strategy opportunities right across the superannuation spectrum for both accumulators and retirees.

Find out more and register

Numbers are strictly limited. 

I look forward to you joining me for this session.


Proudly supported by the following sponsors:


Watch the Federal Budget Webinar

Find out more about the impact of the 2012 Federal Budget on the superannuation sector, by watching this webinar conducted by The SMSF Academy.

The webinar looks at the key changes to the additional contributions tax to apply to high income earners and the impact of the deferral of the extended concessional contribution limit for member’s over 50 with an account balance less than $500,000.

Wishlist or wishful thinking for a super budget?

Many people within the super industry have been moving uncomfortably in their chairs since the Government filtered out of news of an additional level of contributions tax on high income earners (greater than $300,000).  This nervousness is justified as it is again another example of going for an easy revenue grab when confidence and stability in the sector is vital.

I sometimes wonder whether the “sole purpose test” within superannuation law should apply equally to Government as much as it does to members and trustees – the Government seem more concerned about obtaining current day benefits (filling a black hole in the budget), than taking a longer term view to encourage retirement savings which ultimately should reduce a reliance on government support in retirement (Age Pension).   But, I digress…

I think wishing for any positive change is ambitious to say the least!!  However, here are a few items I’d like to see on Budget night:

  • Wouldn’t it be nice to see the Government commit to bringing the concessional contribution cap back to $50,000 for people aged 50 and above.  Whilst this is unlikely, the more worrying concern is the lack of news from Government about even extending the concessional contribution cap next year for those over 50 with account balances of $500,000 or less.  Is this destined for the scrap heap as well?  Haven’t super contributions fallen from grace over the past few years, with individuals 50+ only three years ago able to contribute $100,000 of concessional contributions.  This is soon to be just $25,000!
  • The collection of excess contributions tax has been a big financial windfall for the Government.  It would be pleasing to see the Government extend the ‘”once-off”refund up to $10,000 for excess concessional contributions to be available at any time;
  • We have yet to see draft regulations regarding many of the Stronger Super reforms impacting SMSFs.  One decision that should head for the scrap heap is the proposed prohibition of off-market share transfers.  One can only hope that the Government reconsiders their position on this one…

Transition to Retirement is always one area that appears to be an “easy target”.  The reduction in concessional contributions will certainly have an impact on the strategy benefit, but the reduced strategy benefit could be compounded further subject to any final decision they make on the proposed extension to concessional contributions.  One of the three measures considered in the consultation paper to determine the $500,000 account balance was to disallow to extension where a member has taken previous benefits.  This would include transition to retirement income streams.

Tell me what would you like to see (or not see) in this year’s Federal Budget?

In many instances, no news will be good news.  With growing skepticism of superannuation due to Government tinkering and poor investment markets, the budget provides a timely opportunity for Wayne Swan to show that he won’t raid the retirement “piggy bank” just to get his fix (surplus).

The SMSF Academy will be holding a free webinar on the 2012 Federal Budget and its impact on Self Managed Super Funds.  Full details can be found on The SMSF Academy website.

(C) The SMSF Academy 2012
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