Books & Literature

Book Review: Retirement Made Simple by Noel Whittaker

NON-FICTION: Everything you need to know about planning for a happy retirement.

Invaluable reading if you want to grow and protect your assets

Want to gain the knowledge of a financial advisor, solicitor, and accountant all at once? 

If one of your 2021 New Year’s Resolutions is to get your financials in order, then why not learn from one of the world’s most renowned authorities on personal finance, Mr Noel Whittaker, 2011 Member of the Order of Australia recipient (for services in personal finance).

His latest book Retirement Made Simple is designed in textbook format and speaks for itself; it really is retirement made simple. With the requisite jargon of the finance world so effectively explained, there is no need to slowly digest the wealth of information offered. I read this book in just two days, one weekend. The return on the investment of my time is worth so much more.

Perhaps what matters most is whether you feel the book is relevant to you at this point in your life. Believe it or not, if you are in your twenties or thirties, you need be paying attention!! If you think retirement planning is for older people, or books like these are for existing retirees needing tips on how to manage their super and plan the finalisation of their estate, it simply isn’t true.

Whittaker’s Retirement Made Simple is not catered for any specific age group, however, you would benefit most if you are in the very early stages of your working life. Don’t be put off by the length; it is designed so that you can return to a specific topic as needed.

It starts with investment options and compares cash, real estate, shares, managed funds, and other specialised types of investments. It speaks to the complexities of self-managed super funds, and the role financial advisors and accountants play in maximising one’s tax benefits.

There are tips for divorcees who have remarried, blended families, or parents that have children from a current and previous marriage. With these types of examples, he notes that asset protection may be more important than a high rate of return. This is where he discusses wills as part of retirement planning.

By the same token, if you have concerns with regards to your estate when you pass for other reasons, such as your will being contested, he cites many failed examples of well-intentioned wills and how one can avoid these pitfalls to ensure the purpose of their will is properly executed.

Noel Whittaker is an expert adviser with a consistent message—everyone has different circumstances and so will have different goals—and this is truly the essence of effective retirement planning. In Retirement Made Simple, all these essential topics and their interrelationships are covered all at once.

Reviewed by Rebecca Wu

Distributed bySimon & Schuster Australia
Released: November 2020
RRP: $29.99

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