March 20 2024

Will your super help you live the life you love?

Love is many things to many people. For you maybe it’s channelling your inner rockstar on a road trip or doing yoga to heavy metal… whatever it is, we’re not here to judge. We simply want to help you grow your super so that you can afford do the things that makes life worth living (and loving).
Teapot pouring love hearts into teacups Teapot pouring love hearts into teacups

When you retire, you can work less and have more time to do the things you love. The only catch is you need to be able to afford to do these things. That’s when your superannuation can make a difference.

According to the ABS, most of us can now expect to live well into our eighties. This means that if you stop working at 65, you'll need retirement income for 20 years or more. So, while you may be loving life now, it pays to start planning for your financial future.

The first place to start is by working out an estimate of how much super you’ll have

There’s a lot of calculators out there that can help you work this out. But here’s something we prepared earlier – Rest’s superannuation calculator. It will give you a broad guide of how much super you’ll have to spend and how long it’ll last when you retire.

Before you start punching in the numbers, you’ll need:

  1. How much you earn now (your annual salary)
  2. Your current super balance


 If you are a Rest member you can check your super balance whenever you want in the Rest App. 

Download now

The next thing you need to know is how much you think you’ll need to retire

You just need a rough estimate. You can work this out by thinking about the lifestyle you want and the big costs you’ll have when you retire.

Let’s start with the big costs

Before you retire you might want to try and pay down big costs like a mortgage, personal loans, and credit cards. That means you will have less things eating into your retirement savings.

The other things you’ll need to consider are:

  • Rent (if you don’t own your home)
  • Travel
  • Transport
  • Medical costs
The lifestyle you want

Now this is where ASFA can help. They work out a retirement standard guidelines to help us understand the minimum annual cost of a comfortable or modest standard of living in retirement.

These guidelines can help you work out the lifestyle you’ll be happy with. ASFA estimates that the lump sum needed at retirement to support a comfortable lifestyle is $690,000 for a couple and $595,000 for a single person. This assumes a partial Age Pension.

ASFA estimates that a modest lifestyle, which covers the basics, is mostly met by the Age Pension. They estimate the annual budget needed to support a modest and comfortable lifestyle for a single or couple, which is set out in the table below:

ASFA Retirement Standard Comfortable lifestyle (total per year)     Modest lifestyle (total per year)
Single $51,278 $32,665
Couples $72,148 $46,994
ASFA Retirement Standard Single
Comfortable lifestyle (total per year)     $51,278
Modest lifestyle (total per year) $32,665
ASFA Retirement Standard Couples
Comfortable lifestyle (total per year)     $72,148
Modest lifestyle (total per year) $46,994

Source: ASFA, December 2023 quarter. The figures in each case assume that the retiree(s) own their own home and relate to expenditure by the household. This can be greater than household income after income tax where there is a drawdown on capital over the period of retirement. 

Once you’ve worked that out, you can start to get a bit of a picture of whether you are on the right track for a retirement you’ll love

Depending on where you are, there may still be things you can do to improve your financial future. If you are a Rest member, you could start with the Super Health Check.

It can help you:

  • Review your investment option
  • Finding any lost or unclaimed super
  • Check your insurance cover fits your circumstances
  • Make sure you have your Tax File Number linked to your super
  • Nominate a super beneficiary
  • Optimise your extra contributions – after all every little bit counts.

Get started today

Want to learn more?