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Take control of your super in five easy steps

July 6th, 2016


Think your super is so far out of reach you don’t have control? Think again.

Your super may not be accessible while you’re working, but it’s still in your hands. You choose the fund, the investment option and how much you contribute. And that’s just for starters.

Seize control of your super now and you’ll be thankful when you retire. Start with these five easy steps:

Set a target

Just like any other savings goal, you should set a super target and save towards it. The MoneySmart retirement planner estimates what income you are likely to have from your super and the age pension once you retire. The calculator takes into account your current super balance, contributions and when you aim to retire.

Depending on your circumstances, you may not be wowed by the balance of your nest egg. If this is the case, start making changes now and track your progress with the MoneySmart retirement planner. This excellent resource is free and easy to use. 

Find lost super

More than $16 billion is sitting in lost super accounts, according to the Australian Taxation Office. Part of that fortune could be yours if you haven’t rolled your super accounts into one. More than 14 million Australians have super accounts and the ATO estimates 45 per cent of these people have more than one account. A staggering 2 per cent have between six and 24 accounts.

Consolidate super to save on fees

Reclaim your lost super easily by visiting the myGov website. Here you create an account and link to the ATO, so you can see all of your super accounts including any you may have forgotten. The search also reveals any super funds held by the ATO, which happens when your super fund or employer can’t find your current account to transfer to. You may also try the ATO’s SuperSeeker, which finds lost super and helps with the transfer process.

By consolidating your accounts into one place, you stop paying multiple fees and watch your super grow faster.

Check your investment options

Every super fund has different investment options ranging from high-risk, or high-growth, through to low-risk generally called defensive. Members can select one option or use a combination. If you don’t choose an option, your account will be placed into a MySuper account which combines different investment options at medium risk.

If you don’t know which option your super is invested with, you can easily phone your fund or login online.

Get professional advice

The best investment option for your retirement savings depends on a variety of factors, including your age and employment status. Financial planners^ at First Super can help you determine your risk appetite to decide which investment options is best for you. Advice will also help you define your super goals and identify any strategies to maximise your retirement savings. Call 1300 360 988 to speak to a First Super Financial Planner today.

First Super commissioned The New Daily to research and write this article. The views expressed are of The New Daily.

^Financial advice will be provided by Industry Fund Services Ltd (IFS) (ABN 54 007 016 195, AFSL 232514), or an IFS authorised representative.

This publication was issued by First Super Pty Ltd (ABN 42 053 498 472, AFSL 223988), as Trustee of the First Super superannuation fund (ABN 56 286 625 181). It does not consider your personal circumstances and may not be relied on as financial advice. Content was accurate at the date of issue, but may subsequently change.