24 August 2008

The Markets Again

Yep, Jane and I dressed in our winter woollies and did the market thing again today. It was bigger this week and we both bagged some really good bargains.

I had bought a couple of camp beds off Lisle a couple of months ago and wanted some bedding for them. Today, Lisle and her sister, Barbara, had their own stall and I get a lovely pair of single sheets plus pillow case, really good quality, for $5. A little further on, there was a single thick fleece blanket in a shade to go with the sheets...$5 also. I nabbed a tupperware cake container for $5, a coffee plunger, brand new, which Barb insisted I have for free, plus a small Billabong back pack which the sellers wanted $8 for but I offered $5 and they accepted that. Plus I also bought some more strawberries and a lovely big garlic and parsley plaited bread which I put in the freezer for some future dinner. Oh, and I also found three pretty summer tops, brand new, they still had the tickets on, for $10.

* * * * * * * *
On Friday, I had an appointment with a Financial Information Services officer at Centrelink. When I handed my forms in to register for the Pension Bonus Scheme the week before, I was advised to see this person to find out what my other options were. I wasn't too fussed but I agreed to the appointment.

Was I glad I did! She told me lots of things that I didn't know and advised me on all my concessions and rights then worked out the figures. In the long run, it's better for me to go on a part pension now, while I'm still working, than to forego the pension and claim the bonus at the end of five years...$10,000 better over all. I couldn't believe it. Also from this financial year, the tax threshold has increased. In other words, if I earn under $28,000 per year, I don't have to pay any tax at all.

So I've decided to do apply for a part pension. I do feel a bit of a fraud, although as this lady says, I've paid enough taxes over my working life so it's right I should get some back. Hey, if they say so...who am I to argue?

Now all I have to do to get this extra cash is jump one major hurdle...fill in the forms for it...and believe me, there's plenty of filling out and working out to do. Like estimating the sum of my worldly goods if I had to have a fire sale...not the insurance value because that's usually new for old, plus the market value of my car. Then taking in all my financial details...which isn't too bad because I'm a relatively organised person and everything is filed. But they want to know what year I was divorced...how the hell can I remember that? I can barely remember getting married, let alone divorced. Fortunately, I found the marriage certificate with the dissolution stamp on it. I'm not sure if they want to know what colour my underwear is...no doubt, there'll be a question about that.

Anyway, it'll be worth it in the long run...I quite like this getting older lark.


Gattina said...

I just came back from my sunday walk on the market in Brussels and also bought things for unbelievable prices ! 2 bras (they look like bikini tops) in blue and black (white spotted)for 1 € (!!!) each (usually you have to pay around 20 €) brand new a kitted short sleeved pullover for 3 and 5 underpants for 1 € each ! I will never buy in a shop again, lol ! I was on part time pension too from 55 to 60 and I was lucky now it's from 60 to 65 for women too !

Flip Flop Floozie said...

Hey!! Nice to see Flossy back and to realize that she is your daughter. i don't think that i ever put that together before till now anyway!!
Yes, when it comes to money those forms have almost everything on them. Here is the states that is called Social SEcurity. Mike and I are trying to figure out when we want to do that. I would do what you are doing for sure. Not to have to pay taxes..My we would be thrilled here...

Gypsy said...

Oh you poor thing Robyn. I detest filling out Centrelink paperwork and if I ever have to ring them I need to psych myself up for days. I think they just like to make it such an insurmountable, unpleasant task that most people just throw their hands up in the air and say "forget it" rather than face it.

I'm glad you found out the best way to go and GOOD LUCK with those forms.

Liz said...

What a good news post! Sounds like you picked up some great bargains and had a financial adviser that actually did some good!

Hope you tell them you only ever wear black underwear ...