Modelling the impact of our financial decisions (with very little effort)

Numbers don’t come to me as naturally as words do and this partly explains why I jumped on the personal finance bandwagon a bit later into my twenties. Luckily, many of the basic and sound personal finance concepts can be powerfully communicated using various online calculators.

Here are a few examples using the calculators from the MoneySmart website. (more…)

Adelaide based law firm to charge new lawyers $22,000.00 for legal supervision

phdfindajobA few months ago, I wrote this post speculating on the proposal by a new Adelaide based law firm, Adlawgroup to charge newly admitted Lawyers $22,000.00 for a job. At that stage, I was speculating on the remuneration structure, but it has been confirmed that the Lawyers would not receive a base salary, but rather a commission.

In this article which was posted a few days ago, The Australian has confirmed that the Fair Work Ombudsman has inquired into the business model but is taking no action. Further, Law Society of South Australia president Rocco Perrotta is quoted saying that he expected a review into the business model to be completed within weeks and that the Law Society had no regulatory powers and could not prevent the firm from proceeding. Apparently 25 applicants are lined up and ready to begin. (more…)

Lessons learned in my first 3.5 months as a Lawyer


Hello to my new legally inclined followers, thank you so much for signing up. My previous article on this topic took off on Facebook after it was shared by the awesome site, Survive Law. I thought I would continue the theme and follow up with 5 more lessons learned as I make my way up the ‘new lawyer learning curve‘. (more…)

Lessons learned in my first 3 months as a Lawyer


Today marks the end of my first three months in private practise so I thought I’d mark the occasion by reflecting on some lessons I’ve picked up during this time. Despite probably having been taught some of these concepts during my practical legal training, it wasn’t until I had experienced working in a law firm myself that these lessons revealed themselves to be so critical.


A Break Down of the Insurance Coverage in my Twenties


I was looking at my budget and realised that after the mortgage payments and utility bills, insurance premiums were my next largest expense. I thought it would be a useful exercise to consolidate the various policies and tally up the premiums to put things into perspective and to show what my breakdown of insurance coverage looks like in my twenties. (more…)

Claiming MBA fees as a self education expense on your tax return


My tax return has never been anything special. I vary between owing $500 to the Australian Tax Office (ATO) or having $500 credited to me, meaning that generally my employer has withheld the right amount of tax and I haven’t had any major deductions.

I had always used HECS-HELP (a loan scheme to help eligible Commonwealth supported students to pay their student contribution amounts through a loan or upfront discounts) to pay my university fees, which is not deductible for tax purposes regardless of whether you pay upfront or not. Therefore, I foolishly assumed that my MBA fees were also not tax deductible. Luckily, a friend of mine set me straight over dinner recently. 

Because my MBA fees are covered by FEE-HELP rather than HECS-HELP (I have blogged about the difference here), they are eligible to be claimed as self-education expenses provided that the following criteria is met: (more…)

After 5 years, I’ve lifted my self imposed Credit Card ban. Here’s why.


For the last four to five years, I have been proudly credit card free. Similarly, my partner has been credit card free for at least three years now. I had terrible experiences with credit cards as a young adult, starting from being approved for multiple credit cards at age 18, not really understanding how exorbitant the interest rates were and proceeding to live from pay-check to pay-check with a large credit card debt. When I began to become more financially aware, I paid off all of my credit cards at the first opportunity and avoided them like the plague. I understood that there were benefits in having a credit card, if you used them as a financial tool, and with restraint. For example: (more…)

Are you an ‘average young Australian’ when it comes to personal finance?

Piggy Bank

Although I don’t believe in ‘keeping up with the Jones”, now and then I do like to compare how I am tracking financially to the average Australian, whether it is salary wise, savings or spending. It helps to give me perspective and motivation and is an interesting benchmarking exercise. So here are some average balances I have compiled, to help Gen Y Australians see how they’re tracking. I’ve compiled the balances from several sources, since they all differ due to the underlying assumptions, inclusions or exclusions in the data.  The numbers I have included cover averages Australia wide, in addition to breakdowns by age.  (more…)

A 20-something’s thoughts on trauma insurance

As the regular readers of my blog will know, I’m about to turn 27 soon which means that I have been mentally preparing to turn 30 for the last 6 months. Part of this mental preparation involves ensuring that I get my financial house in order. My early twenties were about getting rid of consumer debt, developing basic financial habits such as budgeting and salary sacrificing into my superannuation to make the most of compound interest. My partner and I also bought an apartment last year and since then I have been trying to build up 3 months worth of savings again. I haven’t quite yet gotten on the investing bandwagon outside of superannuation, but I can’t get trauma insurance out of my mind. I know, it’s a weird thing for someone in their twenties to say. I also would like to start this blog by stating that I do not work for an insurer and this is not a sponsored post, I’m just a twenty-something who happens to be passionate about trauma insurance (this is concerning even to me).  (more…)