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Reading Round-Up

KiwiSaver investors should be thinking local
New Zealand investors are incredibly conservative and unpatriotic. This conservatism is likely to have a negative impact on KiwiSaver returns and our strong bias towards offshore investing does little to alleviate the country’s chronic capital shortage.

Mortgage wars – borrowers take control
Mortgage rates have hit rock bottom and banks are going to extreme lengths to get borrowers to switch lenders.

Third of KiwiSavers cashing in
About one-third of eligible retirees applied to take their money out of KiwiSaver last month and the country’s largest provider expects it to rise to 50 per cent.

11 Personal Finance Equations You Need To Know
Have you ever wondered how to work out compound interest or the rule of 72?  Here are 11 handy math equations that can be used every single day. Write them down, whip out your pencil and get calculating……or more realistically use them in Excel when you are doing your budget.

Retirement daunting for many Kiwis
Nearly half of New Zealand’s retirees feel they are not in a strong enough financial position to meet their retirement needs, according to a new report.

This might be the next Olympic sport!!

Exploding volcanoes: A reminder to review your contents insurance.

Most of us wouldn’t dream of not insuring our home and its precious contents, yet so many don’t realise the true value of our belongings and are therefore woefully underinsured.
A recent study showed that 25% of people’s contents insurance was under-valued by $60,000.  If a disaster strikes, the last thing you want it to be starting out like a student with second-hand fridges and couches because you forgot to update your contents insurance.

I suggest you do an annual review, to cover the new computers, TV or curtains that you may have recently purchased.

The first step is to make an inventory. You should take time to walk around your home prior to renewal and consider the cost of replacing items at their current retail price.

Have you recently refurbished a room? The cost to replace new carpets and curtains can easily run into thousands of dollars.  If you’ve just had a new baby chances are that you’ve bought hundreds of dollars worth of new furniture and equipment to help your baby feel at home.
Remember the shed…all of the man cave tools and toys can add up, and can often be over looked.  What about fishing gear?  The garden shed, all the books you have bought?  Think about all the Tuppawear in your kitchen cupboards.  For most people, it is years and years of accumulation of stuff..not just beds, couches and coffee tables.

It might sound like an arduous task but it’s worth the effort if it means that your home and its contents continue to be adequately insured.
If you really have no idea where to start Click here to download a checklist.

Great Balls of Fire

Tongariro having a little cough and White Island erupting is enough to get us all a little concerned about volcanic activity and how it could possible affect us and our loved ones.The media reports we have nothing to worry about.  Even so, I thought I would remind you about EQC Insurance. It does cover you in the unfortunate event of a volcanic eruption, if you are covered/eligible.

To obtain EQC insurance you must hold a current fire insurance policy on the property with a private insurer.

EQCover is the Commission’s insurance scheme for residential property.

Property Insured

•    Dwellings (self-contained premises used as a home, including apartments);
•    Most personal property but excluding some types (e.g. motor vehicles and art);
•    The land immediately around the dwelling, main accessways, and retaining walls, within certain limits.

Types of natural disasters covered

•    Earthquake, natural landslip, volcanic eruption, hydrothermal activity, tsunami;
•    In the case of residential land, a storm or flood;
•    Fire caused by any of these.

The private insurer is required to collect a premium on behalf of the EQC. You pay 15c for every $100 of cover plus GST. As the cover is limited to $100,000 (plus GST) for houses and $20,000 plus GST for contents this means most people pay $67.50 per annum as part of their House and Contents insurance In addition to the limited EQC cover, private insurers provide cover beyond the EQC cover to the limit of the cover you have on your house and contents policies.

For more information go to