Retirement costs continue to increase


The cost of living for retirees rose slightly in the September quarter, according to the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA).

The ASFA Retirement Standard September quarter figures indicate couples aged around 65 needed to spend $60,843pa for a comfortable retirement, and singles $43,200. The figures were up 0.4 and 0.6 per cent respectively on the previous quarter.

ASFA CEO Dr Martin Fahy said the relatively small increase in the cost of retirement over the most recent quarter was welcome news for retirees, low price increases were more the exception than the rule in Australia over the longer term.

“Retirement can stretch over three decades or more and retirees need to be prepared for and invest for the long term,” Dr Fahy said.

While average increases in the CPI in the current decade had been the lowest in the seven decades it had been published in its current form, a continuation of the current drought was likely to put upward pressure on food costs in the year ahead, with this likely to be exacerbated by relatively high fuel prices.

And despite the low overall rate of inflation over the past decade, some costs had grown strongly, including:

·         Property rates and charges   64%

·         Water and sewerage              68%

·         Electricity                               109%

·         Gas                                         83%

·         Health                                    55%.

Budgets for various households and living standards
for those aged around 65

Household type

Single

Modest

Couple

Modest

Single Comfortable

Couple Comfortable

Housing – ongoing only

$99.05

$111.37

$115.96

$121.23

Energy

$37.48

$50.34

`$47.48

$58.89

Food

$89.08

$165.15

$115.18

$200.19

Clothing

$20.40

$38.78

$27.25

$50.75

Household goods and services

$32.28

$399.08

$73.21

$90.00

Health

$48.14

$92.85

$98.81

$184.97

Transport

$89.17

$94.22

$145.55

$157.88

Leisure

$92.82

$145.45

$180.10

$270.39

Communications

$19.22

$21.65

$24.03

$31.28

Total per week

$528.64

$759.88

$827.58

$1,165.58

Total per year

$27,595

$39,666

$43,200

$60,843

The figures above assume the retiree/s own their own home and relate to household expenditure. All calculations are weekly, unless otherwise stated. Annual figure is 52.2 times the weekly figure.



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