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The average super balances for Australians at different ages may be one way to compare how much super you should have and how confident you can be about readiness for retirement.
With the potential for the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic to impact financial wellbeing, it is arguably more important than ever before to be familiar with how much super you have and what you may need for retirement.
The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) has created a Retirement Standard to help give you a clearer understanding of what retirement lifestyle your savings may give you.
It is updated quarterly to reflect inflation and provides detailed budgets of what singles and couples would need to spend to support their chosen lifestyle.
ASFA’s September quarter 2021 figures suggest that single people will need $45,239 in retirement savings per year for a “comfortable retirement”, and couples will need about $63,799 per year.1
To retire modestly, the ASFA September 2021 figures suggest that single people aged about 65 will need about $28,775 a year and couples will need about $41,446 per year.
To achieve a comfortable retirement, ASFA calculates the amount of savings required by retirement at age 67 are around $545,000 for a single person and $640,000 for a couple.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics has published the average superannuation balances of Australians across age brackets.2
Here’s the average super account balance for Australians at each age:
Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Gender Indicators Australia 2020, accessed 1 February 2022.
While it's helpful to see how average super balances compare, it's important to remember that many Australians' super balances are falling behind what they should be.
Websites like Super Guru show the estimated super balance you should have at each age to help you achieve the savings required for a comfortable retirement.
Here's the super balance to aim for at each age:3
Source: Super Guru, Super Balance Detective, accessed 1 February 2022.
If your super balance is falling short of your expectations, there are still plenty of ways to help grow your super.
One effective action that could be taken is to consolidate super accounts.4
Finding and consolidating lost super into one account could save you money on fees and help your retirement funds grow.
QSuper aims to make it easy to search for lost or forgotten super and combine it into one account through Member Online. Through Member Online, you can search for a full list of any super accounts you may have with other super funds and any ATO-held super that may belong to you. There are no paper forms to sign or mail in.
Other effective measures to help grow super balances include:
Look for lost or unclaimed super through Member Online
1. Media Release, 10 November 2021, Living costs for Australian retirees rise at fastest pace in a decade, Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia at www.superannuation.asn.au
2. Australian Bureau of Statistics, 15 December 2020, Gender Indicators, Australia, December 2020, Table 2:7 Superannuation balance at, or approaching preservation age, by age and by relationship in the household to 2017—2018, at www.abs.gov.au
3. Figures are calculated using the Super Guru Super Balance Detective calculator. Accessed 1 February 2022
4. Before you consolidate your super, please consider if withdrawing savings from your current account/s could lock in a previous investment loss. You should also check if you will lose access to benefits such as insurance or pension options, if you will be charged exit penalties or fees, or if there are tax implications.
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You might make life easier by finding and consolidating your super through Member Online.1
Find any lost and unclaimed super that may be your money.