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Self-Managed Superannuation Funds

Date: 5 March 2016

Self-Managed Super Funds

Self-managed superannuation funds (SMSFs) are a popular option for investors seeking greater control over their retirement savings. However, the decision to establish an SMSF should not be taken lightly. Whether an SMSF is suitable for you will depend on your needs and circumstances and whether you are willing to take on the responsibility of running your own super fund.

What are SMSFs?

SMSFs are superannuation funds which are established and operated by the members of the fund. Under the superannuation rules, the members of an SMSF are generally required to act as a trustee of the fund or as a director of the fund’s corporate trustee, and are legally responsible for managing the fund in accordance with a strict set of legal requirements.

What are the benefits of SMSFs?

Because SMSFs are self-managed they can be more flexible and give members more control over how their super savings are invested and managed. For example, SMSFs can allow members to:

  • develop an investment strategy specifically designed to meet their needs and circumstances and that takes into account their personal investment preferences
  • be directly involved in making the day to day investment decisions for the fund
  • invest in asset classes not available in large funds, such as direct property
  • invest in commercial property which can then be leased back to a related party to use in a business
  • borrow for investment subject to strict requirements
  • pay retirement income streams tailored to their specific requirements
  • implement estate planning strategies tailored to their specific needs and circumstances.

Is an SMSF right for me?

Whether an SMSF is right for you will depend on a range of issues. These include:

  • whether you need or want to additional control and flexibility that SMSFs provide.
  • the size of the fund and how involved you want to get in managing and administering the fund.
  • whether you have the time required to properly manage the fund and keep up with any changes to the superannuation rules.
  • your interest in investing in other asset classes not available in large funds or to get involved in making the investment decisions in relation to your fund.
  • whether your individual needs and circumstances actually suit an SMSF.

If you would like to know more about self-managed super funds, talk to a Roberts & Morrow Financial Services Adviser. They can give you more detailed information on the best approach for your situation.

General Advice Warning: The advice provided is general advice only as, in preparing it we did not take into account your investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs. Before making an investment decision on the basis of this advice, you should also consider the relevant Product Disclosure Statement before making any decision relating to a financial product.

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