Understanding the basics

What is Superannuation?

Superannuation, or super as most of us know it, is a good long-term savings plan, which will provide you with an income when you retire. For many Australians, super will be their main form of retirement income.

How does Super work?

To understand how super works, it’s important to keep in mind that super is a framework for holding investment assets. It’s not an investment in itself. Super funds can offer a range of investment options and asset classes that may include cash, property, shares and fixed interest.

What types of Super Funds are there?

There are several different types of superannuation funds. The mains ones are:

- Employer / Corporate / Staff funds – (funds established by an employer for the benefit of their staff)

- Personal Funds

- Industry Funds

- Self-managed super funds

If you would like more information about the different types of super funds, speak to one of our Financial Advisers.

Can I withdraw the money that I have in super?
Usually, you are restricted from accessing your super money until you reach your preservation age. Your preservation age is based on your date of birth and ranges between 55 and 60. In very specific circumstances you may be able to access your super funds on compassionate grounds, however these situations are limited. For more information talk to our financial adviser’s or go to the APRA website.

When can I access my super?

Generally, you can only access your super savings when you reach preservation age. This is to ensure your super savings are used for when you reach retirement.

Your ‘preservation age’ determines when you can access your money, even if you have not retired. It is based on your date of birth and ranges between 55 and 60.

How much super is enough?

The amount of super you’ll need will depend on your individual circumstances, such as your current age, current income, desired retirement age, desired retirement income and current super balance.

It’s a good idea to speak to our financial advisers, as they can help you with tips and strategies to make the most out of your super and save more for your retirement.

Is compulsory super enough to meet my needs?

Most Australian employers are required to contribute at least 9% of your salary to super; this is known as compulsory super. Even though compulsory super is intended to help fund your retirement, it may not provide you with enough money in retirement for the lifestyle that you want.

Before you decide that you can solely rely on compulsory super contributions, speak to our financial advisers.

Can I choose my super fund?

The short answer is yes. Since 1 July 2005, employees, with some exceptions, have been able to choose the super fund their contributions are paid to. The good thing about this is it puts you in control of what could be your biggest source of retirement savings.

For help in making decisions about super talk to our financial advisers. We can help you identify your goals and recommend the super strategies best suited to your individual situation.

How can our Financial Advisers help you?

With all that’s happening in financial markets at the moment it’s only natural to be looking for help to make sense of it all. Like all of us you want to know what the changing markets mean for you, your family, your savings and your future. That’s why it’s a good idea to speak to a qualified financial adviser.

A financial adviser can help you assess your current financial position and work out whether you’re in good shape to meet you personal and financial goals. Knowing what your goals are puts you in a better position to make choices that are right for you. It also helps your financial adviser develop or update your plan so it is tailored to your needs. The sort of things you should think about are your goals for:

- Building savings and investments,

- Protecting your family and lifestyle,

- Planning for changes in your life like the birth of a child,

- Saving for your retirement

A financial plan based on your goals and priorities puts you in control of your financial future and helps you create a secure and comfortable future. We can also help you understand what to expect from your first meeting and give you tips on how to prepare so you are comfortable and confident with the planning process.

  1. 2017 Super Reforms Marketing Matrium 04-Apr-2017
  2. February Economic & Market Review Marketing Matrium 14-Feb-2017
  3. January Economic & Market Review Marketing Matrium 13-Jan-2017

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