Super considerations to make before you stop work
If you’re considering retiring in the near future, you need a solid retirement plan. Part of this retirement plan should be the super you’ve accumulated over the years. Super can help you transition comfortably from working to not working so you can enjoy your post-work life to the fullest.
Working out how much you need, developing a budget, boosting your super and considering your retirement strategy are great steps to make long before you retire.
Keep boosting your super as part of your retirement plan
If you’re starting to think about retirement, giving your super a top-up on a consistent basis could be a part of your retirement plan.
The super environment has always been a tax-effective one. But an advantage with boosting your super earlier in your working life is that you’re allowing the power of time to help you compound your returns for longer.
This means that as you get closer to retirement, you should have accumulated more super than you would have without topping up your super on a regular basis.
There are multiple ways to do this.
Salary sacrifice is an agreement you make with your employer to make super contributions from your before-tax salary. By salary sacrificing, you could lower your income tax and put more into super, all at the same time.
If you’re a Triple S member, you have no annual concessional contribution cap1. This means you can salary sacrifice as much as you like within any financial year.
Learn more here
Make voluntary after-tax contributions
This is where you make a contribution to your super out of your take-home pay. Because you’ve already paid the tax on it, you won’t need to pay any more contributions tax on that contribution2.
If you happen to be earning less than $57,016 a year, you may also receive a Government Co-Contribution of $0.50 for every $1.00 contributed, up to $500 per year.
And if you’re earning less than $37,000 a year, you could get $500 refunded from before-tax contributions (made by an employer or via salary sacrifice) via the Low Income Super Tax Offset (LISTO)3.
Implement a Transition to Retirement (TTR) strategy
Considering retirement but a bit worried about stopping work and in turn, reducing your income? You may want to consider using a TTR strategy as part of your retirement plan.
If you’re over your preservation age, you can set up a TTR account alongside your existing super account. This TTR account allows you access to some of your super while you’re still working.
With a TTR account in place, you may choose two things depending on your situation —
- You can supplement your income with TTR and reduce your work hours.
- Or you can continue working full time whilst boosting your super and potentially reducing your tax.
Investing in an Income Stream
An income stream is something you can set up as you’re approaching retirement (or if you’ve already retired). It’s definitely worth considering as part of your retirement plan.
If you haven’t fully retired, you can roll part of your super balance into an income stream to receive an income as a Transition to Retirement strategy. With an income stream, you can decide how much and how often you receive money4. You can use the Super SA Income Stream calculator to estimate your potential income.
This is all while your super is growing in a tax-effective environment. The best part is if you’re over the age of 60, all payments that come out of your income stream are tax free.
Thinking about retirement or ready to retire now?
If you’re seriously considering retirement, it may be worth talking to a financial planner before you take the plunge. Everyone’s financial situation is a bit different. Some situations are more complex than others.
A financial planner may be able to help you define what your retirement needs really are. Then they can put a strategy in place to help you get financially ship-shape for a more comfortable post-work life.
At Super SA, we encourage you to seek professional financial advice on your financial planning needs.
You can choose your own financial planner or take advantage of the service available through Industry Fund Services. If you don’t have an existing relationship with a planner, you can contact the Financial Planning Association and access their ‘Find a Planner’ service to locate an FPA member near you.
If you would like to make an appointment with an Industry Fund Services planner, please call the Super SA Advice Administration team on 1300 162 348.
1 Concessional contributions are subject to a lifetime cap ($1.65 million – for the 2022-23 financial year) in Triple S.
2 For more information on tax, please see the relevant scheme PDS
3 LISTO is only available for members of the Super SA Select product, for more information please read the Super SA Select Reference Guide
4 Caps apply. For more information refer to the Income Stream PDS.
Want to learn more about retirement planning?
Are you thinking about retirement? Whether the big day’s five years or one year away, it’s time to take action to get yourself on the right track for a well-planned, comfortable future.
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