July 1 2024

Side hustle and your super – what you need to know

Has your passion become a side hustle or a full-time hustle? With the rise in Australians becoming self-employed with a ‘side hustle’, we’re here to give you some options about your super and being self-employed. But first, what exactly is a side hustle?

The side hustle is where your skills meet your passions

Rather than a second job, a side hustle turns a hobby or skill into a money-maker outside of your 9-to-5. Photography, writing, teaching a musical instrument, dog training, makeup artistry, social media strategy, buying things to restore and resell… The list is endless.

There are plenty of reasons why you might be thinking about turning your passion into pennies:

  • A successful side hustle could help you pay off debt faster – which could also save you money on interest repayments.
  • Wedding, home, holiday… If there’s a goal in mind, and you need some extra disposable cash, a side hustle could allow you to slowly put money aside to help you reach that goal sooner.
  • A side hustle offers a sense of self-reliance and empowerment in an uncertain age.
  • It’s an outlet for using your skills to serve others or may be create something for the world.



If you own a business that employs other people, you’re legally obliged to contribute to their super. And depending on how you set up your side hustle business, paying your own super may be a legal requirement too. Check the ATO rules regarding super so you know where you stand.

Four handy things to know about paying yourself super:

If you’re earning extra income from your side hustle, paying yourself super is something you might want to think about. This may not seem important right now – but putting a little extra aside for your future self in your super fund, could make a difference in the long run. To help, here’s four tips to get you thinking about super and being self-employed. 

1. It may mean you pay less tax this year

Good news, you may be eligible for a tax deduction if you pay yourself super. As a self-employed business owner, you might be able to claim tax back for the ‘concessional contributions’ you make to your own super from your before-tax income. There is a limit on how much you can contribute before incurring extra tax, so make sure you check the contribution caps.

2. …And next year

Depending on your existing super balance, you may be able to bring forward any unused portion of your concessional contributions cap to reduce your tax in the next financial year (see the point above). And as you earn more, you may be able to pay extra contributions to your super to grow it faster. Before making extra contributions though, it’s worth considering things like how much debt you have, plus other financial commitments, including any super contributions for any employees if you own a business that hires them.

3. Get insurance cover through your super

Have you thought about what would happen if you were injured or became ill? It may be worth considering what insurance covers you have. For example, you may already have Death, Total & Permanent Disability (TPD) and Income Protection cover through your super. It is worth giving your super fund a call to check.

Learn about insurance options with Rest.

4. The Government could give you a boost

An Australian Government initiative supports low and middle-income earners to boost their super contributions. You’ll need to meet some eligibility criteria and prove your income, so it’s a good idea to look into this when you’re first starting out. For example: if your yearly income is less than $60,400 before tax, and you meet the criteria, the Government will put in 50 cents (up to $500 a year) for every $1 you add to your super from your after-tax income.*

*The maximum $500 co-contribution per financial year applies when an eligible member makes an after-tax contribution of $1,000. The amount of the government co-contribution reduces by 3.333 cents for every dollar you earn above the FY 2024-25 lower income threshold of $45,400 per year, until you reach the higher income threshold of $60,400 per year, after which you will not be eligible to receive the government co-contribution.

Want to learn more?