Is your super on target?

Got enough super?

Get MoneySmart and work out if you have enough super.

Here's what you can do.

Use our retirement planner

Whatever your age and no matter how much money you have, now is the time to start building your super. Make a few small changes and watch your super money grow.

The retirement planner shows you:

  • How to look at your situation and make improvements
  • What income you're heading for in retirement
  • How to boost your super savings

See how your retirement's looking.

Retirement planner

Boost your super savings

If you want to boost your retirement income, you can consider:

  • Increasing your super contributions
  • Trying to reduce the fees paid to your financial adviser or managed fund
  • Putting your money into slightly less conservative investment options (but get financial advice before you act)
  • Retiring later to keep the money coming in for longer
  • Getting part-time employment
  • Opting for a more modest lifestyle so you need less money in retirement

Work out how much income you need

List your assets and debts

Do a stocktake of your current financial situation. List all your assets (e.g. house, savings, shares, investments in managed funds, investment properties and super).

Also list your debts (e.g. mortgage, personal, car or investment property loans, credit card balance and tax debts). Deduct your debts from your assets to find out how much you're worth now.

What lifestyle do you want in retirement?

Next, work out how much income you need/want in retirement. It all depends on the lifestyle you want or can afford. Think about how much your income is now - you will need about two-thirds of this income per year to maintain your lifestyle.

According to the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) Retirement Standard benchmarks, a comfortable lifestyle for a couple, including entertainment, a car, clothes, private health insurance and holidays, can cost about $60,000 a year. A modest lifestyle will still require about $35,000 a year per couple.

If you have been living on an above average income and you've paid off your home loan, you might need about 67% of your pre-retirement gross income to maintain your lifestyle. Talk to your partner about your expectations, future plans and the lifestyle you want.

Video: Retirement dreams

Retirement planning video

MoneySmart talked to six people about their retirement dreams. Take a look at their stories.

Transcript: Retirement dreams

Big retirement splurges

Also think about any major one-off spending after retirement. You may want to pay off your mortgage, do home renovations, take a big holiday or buy a new car. The trade-off is, the more you spend early in your retirement, the less you have to live off later.

Income sources in retirement can come from a range of sources, including super, other investments and the age pension.

Think about your life expectancy

How much money you need in retirement depends on how long you live. People are generally healthier and living longer than previous generations. Retired men can expect to live to 86, retired women to 90. This means if you stop working at 60, you are likely to need retirement income for at least 26 to 30 years, if not more.Think about your life expectancy

Visit the My Longevity website to explore your life expectancy.

Changes to super in 2017

Contribution limits and super tax concessions changed on 1 July 2017. Details on the changes are available on the Australian Tax Office (ATO) website.

Get financial advice

Planning for retirement is complex and it's important to get advice from people with specialist knowledge. See financial advice for more information on how you can maximise your money. You can also talk to your retired friends to find out their experiences.

It's never too early to start thinking about how to maximise your income in retirement. Take steps now to get the best chance at the lifestyle you want.


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Last updated: 04 Sep 2017