Bounce Financial Case Study: Couple with age gap approaching retirement

Ben Brett 11 June 2024

When it comes to developing a financial plan, each one is unique.

In this blog post, I wanted to outline a strategy we employed with one of our clients who are approaching retirement.

The facts

My clients were a couple approaching retirement with a large age gap.

The husband, Phil was in his late 50s, whilst the wife, Katrina was in her mid 40s (not their real names).

They had two young children in primary school.

Katrina was working full-time as the primary income earner. Phil was working part-time in a lower paying role. They both could live on Katrina’s income if needed.

Phil and Katrina had paid off their house and had a holiday house with a mortgage. They were keen to sell the holiday house as they had owned it a few years and weren’t using it as much as they were in the past.

Phil and Katrina had a slightly different set up in that Phil was a bit older than Katrina. Because of this Phil was getting ready to retire whereas Katrina was looking to continue working until at least the kids were older.

We discussed that the age gap actually presented some planning opportunities.


The main financial goals for Phil and Katrina were as follows:

  1. To reduce tax, particularly for Katrina who was self-employed
  2. To sell the holiday house in a tax efficient manner
  3. To maximise investment leading into retirement and to allow Katrina to retire earlier when the kids finished school (mid-50s)
  4. To utilise superannuation but always have access to money should they change their mind and want to both retire early (as Katrina wouldn’t get access to super until 60)
  5. To maximise any aged pension entitlements for Phil when he turns 67 and potentially becomes eligible.

The Strategy

We mapped out in our advice Phil and Katrina selling their holiday house. They did so and made a nice profit from the rise in property values. This profit however opened up the risk of tax.

To reduce the tax burden, we utilised catch up contributions to make a large contribution to Katrina’s superannuation. This offset the entirety of the tax on the sale of the investment property and allowed Katrina to reduce her income tax by quite a lot.

As they had paid off their house and had relatively low expenses, we started contributing up to the concessional contribution cap for Katrina to reduce her tax each year. We also determined how much we could contribute to Phil’s super to reduce any income tax he would need to pay. The savings worked out to be about $3.5k per year.

Where they had excess savings, we started contributing this to Phil’s superannuation as ‘non-concessional contributions’. Whilst this didn’t provide an immediate tax benefit, it allowed us to invest the money where any returns were taxed at 15% (and 0% when he retired).

The benefit of putting this money into Phil’s superannuation is it meant that they would have access to this money when Phil decided to retire (as he was about to turn 60). This helped us achieve the goal of always having access to money.

With their investment strategy, we had a different strategy for Phil’s money compared with Katrina’s money. This is because they would get access to Phil’s money sooner which required a lower risk investment. For Katrina, as she still had many years to retirement, we could recommend a higher growth/risk investment.

We also mapped out a plan to maximise Phil’s Centrelink Aged Pension entitlements once he turns 67. As there is an age gap between Phil and Katrina, any money Phil has in his superannuation can be taken out of it and put into Katrina’s superannuation which will increase how much he can receive in aged pension (as this money will no longer be counted towards the assets test).

The secondary benefit of this strategy is we would be moving money from the ‘taxable component’ to the ‘tax-free component’. This would be beneficial if Phil and Katrina were to pass away as inheritance to adult children is subject to tax if this comes from your ‘taxable component’.


Overall we managed to avoid paying tax on the sale of the holiday house and provide a large immediate tax benefit by contributing to superannuation.

Each year going forward, we are utilising superannuation to reduce their tax and to grow their investment balance.

By structuring contributions between Phil and Katrina’s super, we have ensured that they always have access to money if they were both to retire as they could use Phil’s superannuation until Katrina hit superannuation access age.

Finally, we have set them up to maximise their aged pension entitlements and to ensure that any money gifted to their kids on death is not subject to additional tax.

We continue to work with these clients ongoing and each year will adjust their contributions to suit.

We are also managing their investments and as they get closer to accessing their money, we adjust the investment strategy to suit. This largely consists of different buckets of money based on timeframes for access.

If you’re wondering how to finish strong and prepare for retirement, then please reach out. Without these strategies, you are likely missing out on a lot of financial opportunities.

About the author: Ben Brett

Ben Brett owns and operates Bounce Financial with his wife, Cara. Having started his career as a Corporate Lawyer, Ben has always had a passion for helping make the complex things simple. Follow Ben on LinkedIn at