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A guide to the different types of superannuation funds

There are a lot of different types of superannuation funds, and many people to not know what the differences between them are. We have compiled this guide to explain the different types of superannuation and details the advantages and disadvantages of each.

MySuper accounts are a new type superannuation account that is a ‘no-frills’ superannuation option. Soon MySuper accounts will become the default superannuation option when an employee has not chosen a super fund. MySuper accounts have low fees and very simple features. Retail, industry and corporate funds can all offer MySuper accounts.

Retail Funds
Retail super funds are run for profit, usually by financial institutions or corporate investment firms. Membership is open to the public and people will often be referred to them by them by financial advisors, who may receive fees or commissions for the referral. For this reason you should always do your own research before taking advice to join a retail super fund. Retail super funds are known to have high fees, so you should always consider whether or not your returns will justify these costs.

Industry Funds
Industry funds are often restricted to employees from a specific industry, although some of the larger ones are open to the public. Industry funds are non-for-profit, so the fund directs all of the returns back to members. The fees of industry funds vary greatly, so you should make comparisons if you are considering an industry fund.

Public Sector Funds
Public sector funds were established for employees of Federal and State government departments. They are usually only open to governments employees, and generally have low fees and are not-for-profit. Public sector funds may be defined benefit or accumulation funds, although newer members tend to be in accumulation funds.

Corporate Funds
Corporate funds are organised by employers for their employees. The fund may be operated by larger retail or industry funds, in which case they will take some of the profits , or be operated by the employer under a boards of trustees, in which case they are not-for-profit.

Self-Managed Super Funds (SMSF)
SMSFs are superannuation funds that are managed by their members. An SMSF may have between one and four members, and they allow people to have more control over their investment options. There are also investments that are possible in SMSFs that are not available in public funds, for example; an SMSF may purchase a residential property that will be transferred to the members when they reach pension age. SMSFs can, however, be time consuming and will be more cost effective for some people than others.





What to consider when consolidating your super

August 27, 2020

The ATO reported that 45% of working Australians were not aware that they had multiple super accounts in 2016. Having multiple super accounts is particularly common for individuals who have had more than one job. If this is you, it is important to identify and manage your super accounts because having more than one can be costly as a result of account fees from multiple funds.To combat this, you may want to consolidate your super, which moves all your super into one account. Not only does this save on fees, but it also makes your super easier to manage and keep track of.

Before consolidating your super, it is important to do the following:

Research your funds’ policy
Compare your active super accounts so you can make the right choice about which one you should close. Things to assess include:

Check employer contributions
Changing funds may affect how much your employer contributes, as some employers contribute more to certain funds. Check your current accounts to see if changing funds will affect this. Once you have selected a super fund, regardless of whether you choose a new super fund or one of your existing ones, provide your employer with the details they need to pay super into your selected account.

Gather the relevant information
When consolidating your super, you will need to have the following details ready: