What is a Self-Managed Super Fund and how do I get one?
We hear about Self-Managed Super Funds (SMSF) everywhere from general business meetings, to networking, to family BBQ’s. Often they come up as topic of conversation when talking about one’s personal affairs. But what exactly is SMSF?
We explore the pure definition of a SMSF, it is a form of superannuation fund that can offer members greater control over their retirement savings than other types of superannuation funds such as industry or retail super funds. SMSF’s are established for the sole purpose of providing benefits to fund members on retirement.
SMSF’s provide many benefits including, greater control over your retirement savings, a wider choice of investment options, potential tax saving advantages and potentially lower annual fees. But, not everyone can meet the requirements for establishing an SMSF.
The following conditions must be met in order to establish an SMSF. An SMSF must have fewer than 5 members, and each member of the fund must be a trustee of the fund This can all be a little confusing and overwhelming. So when considering establishing an SMSF, it is best to get advice or guidance on the matter at hand.
A qualified Financial Planner should be able to help you prepare, implement and review your fund’s investment strategy. An Accountant or Solicitor can provide you with an appropriate trust deed and rules for your fund. An accountant or registered tax agent can look after your accounting requirements for the fund and provide taxation advice. They work closely in relation with an auditor, who must definitely be appointed to sign off on your fund accounts each year. And finally you will need a fund administrator, they help look after the day-to-day running of your fund.
If you are running an SMSF you will typically need a large amount of money in the fund to make setup and yearly running costs worthwhile, and you will need to budget for ongoing expenses such as professional accounting, tax, audit, legal and financial advice. You may need plenty of time to manage the fund and some financial experience would be a bonus so you are more likely to make sound investment decisions.
Super is your investment for your retirement, so don’t rush in. Ensure you speak to your Financial Planner before making any decisions.