Everything you’ve always wanted to know about super in Australia

What is superannuation?

Superannuation is going to play a big part of your future, so it’s important you get to know the basics. The more you know, the more you can take control of your future!


Superannuation is a way of putting money aside now so you have money for your retirement once you stop working. Though mandated by the government, making smart contributions over the course of your life is an investment in your future and could mean the difference between a modest retirement and a comfortable one.

How does superannuation work in Australia?

If you’re earning more than $450 a month your employer must pay a portion of your income into a super account of your (or in some specific cases, their) choosing; currently this rate is set at 9.5% of your annual salary (known as the ‘superannuation guarantee’).

You can elect to increase this percentage or make one-off voluntary super contributions, which often comes with tax benefits.

This money is then invested and compounds over time, possibly leaving you with significantly more at retirement than your savings alone. There are many ways to invest, and Rest can help you decide the right super options for your lifestyle.

sml_lightbulb.pngTip: Super is a long-term investment that often goes up and down, so it’s important you don’t react too harshly to small drops in your account balance.

When can I access my superannuation?

The government has what’s known as a ‘preservation age’ which legally restricts when you can access your super. This is between 55 and 60, pending when you were born and if you are completely retired.
Date of Birth

Preservation age

Before 1/7/1960 55
1/7/1960 - 30/6/1961 56
1/7/1961 - 30/6/1962 57
1/7/1962 - 30/6/1963 58
1/7/1963 - 30/6/1964 59
After 30/6/1964 60
There are also options as to how you withdraw your superannuation. You can withdraw it all as one lump sum, or on a regular basis like a salary (known as an account-based pension). This has the added benefit of having your money continue to work for you as you go.

The power of super really is in your hands, but a little advice never went astray. We love to give personalised advice and help Australians feel confident with their superannuation — give us a call to find out how we can help.

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