It’s time for a super health check
Posted by Northadvisory on July 29, 2021
Have you taken the time to review your annual superannuation statement yet? At the end of the financial year, super funds provide you with this important information and it gives you the perfect opportunity to perform a quick super health check.
No one can deny that it’s been a tumultuous 12 months. The early stages of the pandemic created havoc in the share market and there was a lot of volatility, but there’s been an unprecedented bounce back and we have witnessed record highs in recent months.
While initial predictions anticipated extreme drops in investment returns, reports from the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) indicate exceptional benefits this year, with funds delivering close to 20%.
Knowing this information is a great starting point for you to review your own superannuation to make sure you are set to achieve your financial goals for retirement.
Consolidate accounts and check for lost super
First things first; if you have more than one super account, it may be beneficial to consider consolidation. This simple step can help save you unnecessary super fund administration fees, which over time can make a massive difference to your retirement savings. The more you can save, the higher your super balance will grow!
You should also check if you have any lost super. This is another easy process you can do online with the ATO. Super providers have to pay all low and inactive account balances to the ATO, and the ATO keeps them quarantined until you formally claim the funds. Again, you can manage this through your MyGov account.
Review fund performance
ASFA states, “Average balanced super funds have delivered around 9% per year for the five year returns and around 8.5% for the ten year average return.” On that basis, this year’s average performance of nearly 20% is impressive to say the least… in fact it’s the best performance since the start of compulsory superannuation.
The investment options you have within your super will influence the returns. If you have a larger portion of your super invested in growth assets then you may have seen higher returns than the average… and on the reverse, if your investments focus on less risk, you may have achieved lower returns. But it is still important to review the overall performance of your fund.
Your super fund’s performance directly affects your retirement nest egg, so take the time to compare – and consider making changes if required.
Check your fees
Nobody likes to pay fees, but they are a standard charge that you cannot avoid. However, there can be a significant disparity between funds, so it can be worth your while to shop around and check the different fee amounts.
Your annual statement should clearly outline how much you are paying, so jump online and start making some comparisons… looking at both the fees charged as well as the returns performance to find the best combination.
Assess the forecast
Another element within your annual statement is the forecast. This gives you a rough estimate of how much you might have in your super balance when it comes time to retire. The question of how much you need to retire is one that we’ve discussed in the past, but ASFA calculates that “to have a ‘comfortable’ retirement, single people will need $545,000 in retirement savings, and couples will need $640,000.”
If you have any concerns or questions about your super forecast, we recommend speaking with a professional about strategies to boost your balance. You can also visit the Government’s Moneysmart website – there is an online calculator where you can input various amounts, including personal contributions, to see how much of a difference they can make to your retirement balance.
Seek professional advice
We understand that people often put superannuation in the too hard pile… but it’s important that you take control of your funds and make it work for you and your future. Cayle Petritsch, Director and SMSF specialist, says:
“Super is most people’s second largest asset after their home, so it’s really important to get the fund management right.
At North Advisory, we love building long-term relationships with our clients and taking all the headaches out of managing their super.”
If you’d like to find out more about how we can help you, please contact us today.