Types of AustralianSuper superannuation accounts
AustralianSuper offers a variety of superannuation products. This includes its AustralianSuper Plan (for full-time, part-time and casual employees of any industry), and its Personal Plan (for people self-employed as sole traders or as a partner in a partnership, or who are not currently in paid employment). Features on offer as part of these products include:
- A range of investment options to choose from, including the default Balanced option and other pre-mixed options including Socially Aware and High Growth options. AustralianSuper also offers DIY mix options, where you select a combination of asset classes (such as Australian shares, international shares and property) and a Member Direct investment option where you can invest in your choice of selected shares, exchange traded funds (ETFs), listed investment companies (LICs), term deposits and cash.
- Life insurance, total permanent disability (TPD) insurance and income protection insurance available within super (as with any insurance product, consider checking the cover amount, any exclusions, limits or other conditions that apply, as well as the premiums you would be charged before deciding whether it suits your needs)
- Financial advice available over the phone or face-to-face. AustralianSuper also holds retirement and financial planning webinars at no additional cost to members
Eligibility to join AustralianSuper
To apply for a superannuation account with AustralianSuper, you must be an Australian resident. Bear in mind that other eligibility criteria may apply, so consider checking these with AustralianSuper before starting your application.
How to join AustralianSuper
If you decide to join AustralianSuper, you can open an account online or by sending AustralianSuper a completed application form. Before you start, AustralianSuper says you will need to have the following details at hand:
- Your Tax File Number
- Your employer’s ABN (if you’re working)
AustralianSuper says you will also need to be prepared to make investment and insurance decisions and nominate your beneficiaries.
AustralianSuper says the application process should take less than 15 minutes.
Yes, AustralianSuper members can manage their super online and via the AustralianSuper mobile app. You should also be able to view your account balance, access statements for your account, download super fund information, manage your insurance and switch your preferred investment options.
AustralianSuper offers you three options for deciding how your super is invested:
- PreMixed: a less hands-on option which allows you to simply pick one of AustralianSuper’s pre-mixed investment options. AustralianSuper offers Balanced, High Growth, Socially Aware, Indexed Diversified, Conservative Balanced and Stable options. These options invest in different combinations of assets like shares, property and cash.
- DIY Mix: allows you to choose the asset classes you want your super to be invested in, and in what amounts. AustralianSuper allows you to invest in Australian shares, international shares, property, diversified fixed interest and cash.
- Member Direct: a hands-on option which gives you a great amount of control by allowing you to choose specific S&P/ASX 300 Index stocks, ETFs, LICs and term deposits.
According to AustralianSuper, the fees charged on its superannuation accounts include:
- Administration fee: $2.25 per week plus up to 0.04% p.a. of your account balance
- Investment fee: the investment fee is calculated looking back as at 30 June each year and is likely to change each year. For example, for super accounts invested in the Balanced option, the investment fee in the year ending 30 June 2020 was 0.50% of your account balance.
- Insurance fees: depends on the level/amount of cover you have, your age and the type of work you do.
- Advice fees: AustralianSuper says it can provide general or simple personal advice over the phone for free. However, if you want to meet face-to-face with an adviser, a flat fee may be charged. A fee of up to $295 may also apply for advice about starting a Choice Income account or transition to retirement options.
Bear in mind that other fees may apply and consider checking the product disclosure statement (PDS) for details. You can also compare AustralianSuper’s fees to the other super fund fees on Canstar’s database.
To help you stay on top of your super, it may be beneficial to check your regular super statement closely. Here are some of the factors that could be worth paying attention to:
- Personal details are up-to-date
- Nominated beneficiaries are up-to-date
- Tax File Number (TFN) is recorded
- Super contributions from employer and/or your voluntary contributions are correct
- Investment asset class choices are appropriate for your life stage
- Amount paid in fees
- Insurance still adequate
- Super is consolidated, after checking whether there is insurance or any other benefits attached to the account you may lose and you’re comfortable to do so
- The big picture – are you happy with your super fund overall?
AustralianSuper says you can consolidate your super by filling in its ‘Combine your super web form’ or by downloading and completing the form and emailing it back to AustralianSuper.
You can also consolidate your super through the ATO via the myGov website.
It’s important to check with your current super fund(s) for information regarding any related costs and any insurance cover you may lose if you switch super funds. Also consider whether consolidating your super is a suitable decision for your life stage and retirement goals.
AustralianSuper was formed in 2006 and says it is now Australia’s largest superannuation fund, with more than $150 billion in assets and around 2.25 million members. In addition, AustralianSuper says it works with one in 10 Australians.