- what is superannuation?
- what do you get from super?
- what do super funds do?
- which fund should you choose?
- what can you do now with your super?
- when can you withdraw super?
What is superannuation?
Superannuation is a tax-effective investment structure to help you save for your income needs in later life.
Your savings are preserved by law so you generally cannot withdraw them until you reach your preservation age and permanently retire from work.
What do I get from super?
The money you withdraw from super at retirement is called your ‘benefit’. Depending on your choice of fund or scheme, you may elect how to withdraw your final benefit – either as pension, lump sum or combination of both.
What do super funds do?
Your fund or scheme pools your retirement savings (your contributions and investment earnings less fees, taxes, insurance premiums and any other costs) with those of other members in order to invest them for the benefit of all members. Investment earnings – which may be positive or negative – are then applied to your account.
There are different types of funds. ‘Accumulation’ funds are most common; for instance, your government superannuation scheme – PSSap – is an accumulation scheme.
Which fund should I choose?
Different funds and schemes offer different benefits, risks and costs. Compare your options to find one that suits your personal objectives, situation and needs. But like any investment you may choose, there are always risks and the value of your super benefit can rise and fall due to factors such as market fluctuations, fees and taxes.
What can I do now with my super?
Plan ahead so your super savings can grow over many years to meet your future income needs. It is never too early to start. Answering these questions can help:
- Which superannuation scheme or fund is best for me?
- Should I consolidate my other super into that scheme?
- Should I add a little extra such as personal contributions or salary sacrifice?
- Which investment option is best for me? How do I change?
- What insurance cover do I have through my super? Should I increase it?
Remember, taking a few simple steps today can make a big difference to your future.
When can I withdraw my super?
Under superannuation law, you generally cannot withdraw your super savings until you reach your preservation age and permanently retire from work.