Even though retirement may seem far away, the earlier you can wrap your head around how super can benefit you, the more benefit you'll see.
Here are five key aspects every under 30-year-old should know about their super, including insurance, investment options, understanding the basics, contributing, and keeping track:
You may only know about super from your pay slip and have no idea what it actually is, don't panic! You're not alone, and it's easy to get informed. Let’s get started right now:
Superannuation, or 'super', is a long-term savings plan designed to support you during retirement. The best bit about this long-term savings plan? You legally can’t access it until you reach retirement age, so you can’t just get it out to go on a spur-of-the-moment shopping spree.
In Australia, your employer is legally obligated to contribute a percentage of your salary (currently 10.5% as of the 2022-23 financial year) into a super fund. This mandatory contribution is known as the super guarantee (SG). Your super is then invested by your chosen fund, with the earnings reinvested to grow your savings over time.
Want to learn more? Head over to the Spirit Super website to continue your journey.
Super funds typically provide you with a range of options for investing your super, ranging from more conservative to high growth options. As a young worker, you may want to consider a growth-oriented investment strategy, as you have more time left before you retire. High Growth options can have a higher return over a longer period (returns of 8.86% over 10+ years) versus a conservative (4.49% over 10+ years) or balanced (7.7% over 10+ years) investment option.
Assessing your risk tolerance and aligning your investment choices is essential. Take the time to research and compare investment options to ensure you make informed decisions that suit your unique circumstances. If you're unsure, you can read more about investment risk here or if you’re a member, have a quick chat with a Spirit Super Superannuation Adviser.
If you’re with Spirit Super and you don’t make a choice, you’ll automatically be put in the Balanced (MySuper) option, which may mean you’re missing out on some higher long-term returns that you could have made if you were in a Growth option.
Once you have over $6000 in your super account, you will most likely be eligible to have insurance through your super.
Insurance through your super covers you for total and permanent disablement, income protection (in certain circumstances), terminal illnesses and even death. These insurance policies can offer valuable financial support in case of illness, injury, or death. There are certain eligibility criteria for insurance through super so it’s worth checking to see if you have insurance and, if you do, review your insurance options and ensure the coverage is appropriate for your needs.
If you're a Spirit Super member, it's easy to see your insurance by logging in to Member Online or downloading our app.
Getting the most out of your super starts with understanding the different ways to contribute to it. While your employer's SG contributions (remember, we talked about these earlier) lay the groundwork, you can further build your super by making additional contributions. There are two primary methods: before-tax and after-tax contributions.
Before-tax contributions (also called Salary Sacrifice, which sounds bad, but it’s actually not) means that you arrange with your employer to pay some of your pre-tax salary into your super. This can be quite a tax-effective way to save.
After-tax contributions are made from your take-home pay. Both before-tax and after-tax contributions are subject to annual limits. You can read more about this here.
Making extra contributions now can lead to significant growth in your retirement savings due to the power of compounding interest.
If you've had multiple jobs, you may have unintentionally ended up with multiple super accounts. This can lead to paying multiple sets of fees, which can seriously impact your super balance in the long run. Consolidate your accounts by rolling over your super into a single account.
By learning the basics, exploring investment and insurance options, contributing to your super, and keeping your super in the one place, you can secure a comfortable financial future. Embrace these tips and make the most of your super journey!
Ready to get started? Visit the Spirit Super website today.
This is general information only and doesn’t take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should assess your financial position, personal objectives and needs before making a decision based on this information.
Consider the PDS and TMD at spiritsuper.com.au/pds. Issuer is Motor Trades Association of Australia Superannuation Fund Pty Ltd (ABN 14 008 650 628, AFSL 238718). Awards and ratings are only one factor when deciding how to invest your super. Advice is provided by Quadrant First Pty Ltd (ABN 78 102 167 877, AFSL 284443).
Spirit Super has an agreement with WeMoney permitting it to use the WeMoney logos, and for WeMoney to promote Spirit Super’s recognition through the WeMoney Awards. Read about the award methodology at wemoney.com.au.