Regulation & Policy
Five tips on setting your super up for success
By Penny Catchlove
Published Wed 26 Aug
3 mins read
With many of us spending more time at home, now is a good opportunity to take more interest in, what could be your biggest asset, your superannuation.
<p>With many of us spending more time at home, now is a good opportunity to take more interest in, what could be your biggest asset, your superannuation. While for some of us accessing super may seem a long way off it is never too early to ensure your super is setup for your future benefit. There are also moves towards increasing compulsory contributions from 9% to 12% so taking an active interest in your super will become even more important. Here are some handy tips to help you get started with a super review.</p> <p><strong>Tips to help setup your super for success</strong></p> <p>- Check your contributions are being paid</p> <p>- Consolidate your accounts</p> <p>- Choose your insurance for your needs</p> <p>- Consider your investment options</p> <p>- Check your personal information</p> <p><strong>Check your contributions</strong></p> <p>Check your contributions are being made by your employer into your super fund just as you would your pay being paid into your bank account. This is your money which you are entitled to so don’t take it for granted and make sure you are getting paid your super correctly.</p> <p>Additional contributions to super are also an effective way to reduce the amount of tax you pay so may be a wise strategy depending on your circumstances.</p> <p><strong>Consolidate your accounts</strong></p> <p>If you have multiple super accounts from different jobs it is definitely worth consolidating them. Fees are charged on every super account so to reduce the amount you pay in fees combine all your super into the one account. It is a relatively straightforward process to rollover super into a nominated super account, all you need are the rollover forms and the super account details.</p> <p><strong>Too much or too little insurance</strong></p> <p>Most super funds include insurance such as Death, Total and Permanent Disability and Income Protection. A review should be done on your insurance cover within your super fund to identify whether there is cover not included that you would prefer as part of your fund or cover that is not required. For instance, if you have no dependents then Death cover may not be necessary. Taking more of an active interest in the insurance coverage in your super fund could save you money each month.</p> <p><strong>Investment options</strong></p> <p>Taking an active interest in super is easy by choosing the type of investments in your portfolio. Most super funds have different investment options such as growth and balanced which will impact the earnings on the fund. A balanced fund invests in different assets but may not give as higher return as a growth fund, with a higher risk profile.</p> <p>You may also be able to choose which asset class the units in your fund are invested in. Cash is often the safest option but may also give the lowest returns, shares fluctuate more so are riskier but may give a better return in the long term, similarly with property.</p> <p>Some funds will also include an ethical investments or socially responsible investing which has been gaining momentum in recent years. This means that the fund will only invest in areas that are sustainable and do not cause ethical conflicts such as gambling.</p> <p>Which investment options you choose will depend on a number of factors including your age and propensity for risk, so it is best to do your homework and see a professional before you make significant changes to your super.</p> <p><strong>Personal information</strong></p> <p>Make sure your personal information is up-to-date as your fund may contact you with important information.</p> <p>Also check the medical information your super fund keeps on you. One super fund was found to automatically classify members as smokers and therefore charge more on insurance. Checking this information may involve a call to your fund.</p> <p>While all these tips may seem minor they can add up to ensure you receive the most benefit from setting up your super.</p>