Date posted: 17/07/2017 3 min read

It's time to get excited about retirement

We speak with independent financial advisor Claire Mackay CA in episode ten of the new Acuity podcast about making your dream retirement a reality.

In brief

  • Start planning for your retirement now. It’s never too early.
  • Taking control of your retirement savings will motivate you and get you excited.
  • Visualise your dream retirement and plan the numbers around that vision.


The financial pressure to save enough to retire comfortably can be stressful. In a political environment where changes to policy occur often, some individuals may find it too difficult to stay on top of the superannuation system.

Taking control of your retirement means having a plan. Claire Mackay CA of Quantum Financial, speaks with Acuity podcast host Mike Lynch and co-host Kylie Kwong in episode ten of the new Acuity podcast.

In this episode Mackay says that it’s important to visualise what your retirement looks like and take steps to make that a reality for the future.

Australia has a superannuation scheme where 9.5% is taken out of our pay cycle every payday. This money is put into retirement savings. Most of us from day to day or week to week don’t think about where our hard-earned cash is going and why. 

She says people need to start visualising what their dream retirement looks like.

“This will motivate you to put a plan in place to make that more realistic,” she says.

“I’m a big believer in ‘it’s never too late to start’. It’s never too early. If you get excited about it, you can start making possibly some hard decisions now to make it a really wonderful dream retirement that you actually want,” Mackay says.


Picture credit: Cameron Ramsay / Studio Commercial

The most important aspect in planning for your retirement is thinking about how much money you will need to live comfortably. This changes from person to person. Put all of the factors that will help you live comfortably into your plan and then put the numbers around that.

Having no debt is also something you definitely want to aim for before you retire.

There is no magic number

Mackay says that as a rule of thumb in Australia, a comfortable retirement in a major capital city is approximately A$60,000.

“That doesn’t mean you can get a new car every couple of years. If you want to have those regular overseas travels or more luxuries in your retirement, then you need to start budgeting what that number is. Once you know what the annual amount is, then you can do some calculations to figure out what lump sum will support that,” Mackay says.

As individuals live longer, the age to receive the retirement pension will also move. The age pension is currently at 65 in Australia but will be going up shortly to 67 and Mackay says it is now even more important to start saving as we grow older and live longer.

Mackay urges us to take control.

“By taking control you're actually creating your own future and that's the most exiting thing about working with people planning for retirement. Then we can actually tick off all of those achievements, that trip through Tuscany, the cruise, the long-awaited cruise.”

How to find the Acuity podcast 

The Acuity podcast tackles the latest issues in economics, business and finance and is available to stream and download for free at
Bookmark the Acuity Soundcloud page to keep up to date with new episodes as they are published. Or you can subscribe to the Acuity podcast in your preferred format to receive new episodes directly via your chosen channel.

Claire Mackay has more than 16 years’ experience in private wealth management providing tailored financial solutions to high net wealth and ultra high net wealth private clients at Quantum Financial.