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Why You Need to Schedule Superannuation Reviews Regularly

June 16, 2023 | Superannuation

You put in a lot of time and effort because you want to retire comfortably. However, concerns arise as retirement draws near.

Is my superannuation enough?

Worry not. By conducting a superannuation review now, you’ll know whether your retirement planning can provide the funds you’ll need and make an informed decision on how to move forward with your super fund.

What are Superannuation Reviews?

Superannuation fund reviews require regularly assessing and evaluating your superannuation fund and retirement plan. It ensures that your super fund is on track to meet your retirement goals and for you to make any necessary adjustments along the way.

Generally, one conducts superannuation fund reviews on an annual basis. However, the frequency of reviews may vary depending on individual personal circumstances and preferences, such as financial goals, proximity to retirement age, life events, economic conditions, and regulatory changes.

Benefits of Regular Superannuation Reviews

By conducting regular super fund reviews, you get peace of mind knowing you can identify gaps in your retirement plan, increase savings, make better investment decisions, and even reduce fees.

Identify Gaps in Retirement Plan

A regular review can help you identify any deficiencies in your retirement plan.

For example, you could be contributing too little or not investing in the right mix of assets. A review can ensure that your retirement plan is on track to accomplish your retirement goals.

Maximise Growth and Optimise Investments

Regular reviews can help you maximise the growth of your super fund. You may evaluate how well your investments match your financial objectives, risk tolerance, and time horizon.

If necessary, you can adapt your investment plan, diversify your portfolio, or examine alternative options in investment markets and financial institutions to maximise growth potential while properly managing risk.

Adjust Contributions

Your financial circumstances can change over time, so it’s important to review your super fund contributions regularly.

For example, if you receive a raise, you may want to look into ways to increase contributions, such as salary sacrificing or making additional voluntary contributions, to ensure you fulfil your retirement savings goals.

Alternatively, if you suffer a financial setback, you may need to reduce your contributions.

Optimise Fees

Fees and expenses associated with superannuation funds include administration fees, investment management fees, and insurance premiums. Regularly examining these fees allows you to evaluate their impact on your retirement fund and uncover cost-cutting alternatives.

You can examine multiple funds or investment options to find reduced fees or better conditions, maximising the growth of your super fund balance.

Key Components of a Superannuation Review

A complete superannuation review entails assessing several essential components to ensure your retirement plan is on track and aligned with your goals.

By thoroughly examining these components during your superannuation review, you can make informed decisions and take the necessary steps to optimise your retirement plan.

Investment Performance

Evaluate the results of your super fund investments over a certain time frame. Check their performance against relevant benchmarks to see if it meets your expectations.

Assess your portfolio’s asset allocation to ensure it reflects your risk tolerance and long-term goals. Adjustments may be needed to maximise investment performance and reduce risk.

Retirement Income

Assess the adequacy of your super fund contributions. Determine whether your current contribution levels will provide a sufficient retirement income for your desired lifestyle.

Consider projected growth rates, inflation, and future changes in circumstances to determine if you must adjust your contributions to meet your retirement income goals.

Beneficiaries and Estate Planning

Check your beneficiary designations to make sure they still represent your current preferences. Consider any changes in your circumstances, such as marriage, divorce, or childbirth, that may necessitate updating your beneficiary designations. In addition, look into any superannuation-related estate planning implications, such as establishing testamentary trusts or using binding death benefit nominations.

Insurance in Super

Study your super fund’s insurance options, such as life insurance, total and permanent disability (TPD) insurance, and income protection insurance.

Evaluate the sufficiency of your coverage in light of your present circumstances and needs. Consider changes in income, dependents, and debt levels to ensure that your insurance coverage adequately protects you and your loved ones.

Working with a Financial Adviser

Financial advisers can help you review and plan your superannuation for a comfortable retirement. You’ll get comprehensive financial advice relating to organising your superannuation and investment statements and analysing your finances. They’ll assess your goals, risk tolerance, and retirement timeline.

Based on expertise in superannuation regulations and investment strategies, a good financial adviser can assess your plan’s strengths and weaknesses. They’ll personalise recommendations to optimise your assets, modify your contributions, and maximise retirement savings.

But it doesn’t stop there. A financial adviser follows your progress and makes adjustments as needed. They’ll advise you on superannuation developments, changes in regulations, and market conditions. With their help, you can make confident decisions and trust your retirement plan.

Working with a financial adviser is a collaboration. They’ll take the time to understand your financial dreams, fears, and everything in between. Together, you’ll develop a customised action plan based on your superannuation review. Through ongoing communication and teamwork, you’ll have the knowledge and support needed to make smart choices and secure a bright retirement future.

Steps to Conduct a Superannuation Review

Now that it’s clear how important a regular superannuation review is. Let’s dive into the steps to conduct a super review.

1. Gathering information

Begin by gathering all essential information about your superannuation. This includes account statements, fund documents, investment statements, and any other relevant paperwork. Having these documents available will provide you with a clear picture of your present financial situation.

2. Analysing investment performance

Take a close look at the performance of your superannuation investments. Compare their returns against appropriate benchmarks to determine how well they have performed. Analysing investment performance will assist you in determining whether any adjustments or changes to your investment plan are required.

3. Assessing the impact of inflation

Consider how inflation will affect your retirement plans. Over time, inflation erodes the purchasing power of your money. Examine whether your current retirement goals are still attainable and whether adjustments are required to ensure your funds will be sufficient to meet your future needs.

4. Evaluating investment options

Review the investment options available within your super fund. Assess whether your current investment options align with your risk tolerance, goals, and time horizon. Consider diversifying your investments to reduce risk and potentially enhance returns.

5. Reviewing contribution strategies

Evaluate your contribution strategies to see if they align with your retirement goals. Consider whether you are making enough contributions to reach your savings targets. To increase your super funds, consider salary sacrificing or making additional voluntary contributions.

Taking Action Based on the Review Findings

It’s time to take action after you’ve performed a superannuation review and found areas for improvement. Based on your review results, the following are the main measures to consider:

Implement Changes

If your review reveals underperforming investments or a need for diversification, modifications to your investment portfolio may be required.

Consult with your financial adviser for personal advice to modify your asset allocation, choose better-performing funds, or investigate other investment opportunities that match your risk tolerance and future goals.

Adjust Contributions

You might want to modify your contribution amounts in light of the review’s findings. Increased payments, whether through salary sacrifice or voluntary contributions, might increase your superannuation savings over time if it’s falling short of your savings goals.

In contrast, if your review shows that you’re on track or are giving too much, you can consider reducing your contributions to free up money for other financial goals or debt repayment.

Update Beneficiaries and Estate Planning

Reviewing beneficiary designations and revising estate planning paperwork is critical in ensuring your super funds are delivered according to your intentions. Because life circumstances change, it’s important to consider any new relationships, births, or changes in family dynamics.

To ensure your beneficiary designations and estate planning paperwork are current and in line with your personal situation, speak with an estate planning lawyer or financial adviser.

Consider Other Financial Steps

Beyond investments and contributions, your superannuation review may reveal the need for extra financial planning steps.

For example, if your review reveals significant amounts of debt, it may be beneficial to implement a debt management strategy to reduce interest costs and improve your overall financial position.

Additionally, exploring tax strategies, such as taking advantage of tax deductions or utilising tax-efficient investment structures, can optimise your financial prospects.

Consult with a financial planner to assess and implement these additional financial planning steps.

Monitoring and Ongoing Maintenance

Regularly reviewing and adjusting your superannuation plan ensures it remains aligned with your changing financial circumstances and long-term objectives.

Establish a timeline for future reviews to make the task easier. Set a schedule for regular super reviews, whether annual or biennial, depending on your circumstances. Doing so allows you to stay proactive in managing your retirement savings.

Stay informed about legislative changes that may affect your superannuation. This includes staying informed about contribution limits, tax rules, and any updates to the superannuation system. This knowledge will help you make informed decisions and ensure compliance with current laws.

Utilise technology tools and online platforms to track and manage your superannuation. Many superannuation providers offer online portals or mobile apps that allow you to monitor your account, track investment performance, and access educational resources. These tools can simplify the process and provide valuable insights into your superannuation.

Bottomline: Schedule Your Annual Superannuation Review Today! 

Take control of your financial future through regular superannuation fund reviews. You can ensure a secure and comfortable retirement by evaluating your investments, adjusting contributions, and staying informed about changes.

But don’t leave your financial well-being to chance. Take the next step and consider partnering with a financial advisor superannuation expert. With their expertise and personal financial advice, you can navigate the complexities of superannuation confidently and build a solid foundation for your retirement dreams.

Get Superwise About Your Superannuation with Coastal Advice Port Macquarie 

Superannuation is vital to your financial future in retirement as an Australian. Whatever stage you are right now in your career, learning about how you can make the most out of your long-term retirement savings plan is always a good practice.

At Coastal Advice Port Macquarie, we can provide the specialist financial planning, expert knowledge and guidance you need to help you make the right financial decisions for your superannuation strategy so you can look forward to your future with confidence.

Call us or book online to secure your complimentary first appointment with us today and get started!

Sources:

DISCLAIMER: Coastal Advice Group Pty Ltd is a Corporate Authorised Representative of RI Advice Group Pty Ltd, ABN 23 001 774 125 AFSL 238429.

(Trading names of Coastal Advice Group Pty Ltd include Newcastle Financial Planning Group, Central Coast Financial Planning Group, Sydney Wealth Advisers, Compass Advice Port Macquarie, Wealth for Life Financial Planning and Coastal Advice Group Brighton/Somerton Park).

The views expressed in this publication are solely those of the author; they are not reflective or indicative of the Licensee’s position and are not to be attributed to the Licensee. They cannot be reproduced in any form without the express written consent of the author. Opinions constitute our judgement at the time of issue and are subject to change. Neither the Licensee, nor their employees or directors give any warranty of accuracy, nor accept any responsibility for errors or omissions in this document.

Any advice or information in this publication is of a general nature only and has not taken into account your personal objectives, financial situation and needs. Because of that, before acting on the advice, you should consider its appropriateness to you, having regard to your objectives, financial situation or needs.

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Past performance is not a reliable guide to future returns.

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The information in this publication reflects our understanding of existing legislation, proposed legislation, rulings etc as of the date of issue. In some cases, the information has been provided to us by third parties. While it is believed the information is accurate and reliable, this is not guaranteed in any way.

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