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Super income stream and Age Pension

How can they work together?

Any amount of super can help you enjoy retirement, no matter how small your super balance is. By combining your superannuation with the Government Age Pension, you can improve your position. 

To find out more, or to speak with someone about your specific situation contact your fund.

How do I get the most out of a small super balance?

It’s important to remember that your super can be eaten into by fees and charges. So a good starting point is to ensure it’s invested with a low-fee fund such as an Industry SuperFund.

When you choose a low-fee income stream, and combine that income with the Age Pension, your regular income can get a nice boost – even when you retire with a super balance under $100,000.

Here's an example

Barbara's story

Barbara is a mum of four grown up children and a grandmother to seven. 

As well as raising her children she juggled part-time work as an administration assistant, picking up more hours as her kids grew older.

She separated from her partner years ago and now lives by herself in a rented unit near the beach.

Now 70, she’s been enjoying retirement for the past five years. Due to being in and out of the work-force, her super balance at 65 was $50,000 and she knew she would need to rely on the Government Age Pension to fund her retirement.

Before retiring, she spoke with her Industry SuperFund’s financial planner to ensure she made the most of her $50,000. They advised her to draw down on her super through an income stream to top up her Age Pension. That would maximise the amount of Age Pension she would receive and allow her $50,000 to continue to grow a little in the early years of retirement, before she gradually draws down on all of it.

Here’s what that looked like:

  • Her super balance was $50,000 when she retired.
  • Over the past five years she withdrew around $2,700 each year to top up her Age Pension.
  • Today, her Industry SuperFund balance has grown to $60,537.
  • Her annual income over the past five years (from her super and the Age Pension) has been about $26,500.

For Barbara, that extra $2,700 comes in handy for the grandkids at Christmas time and to fund a holiday every year

 Super balance invested after income takenIncome stream paymentsAge Pension paymentsTotal income
2012/13 $50,000 $2,500 $22,768 $25,268
2013/14 $55,597 $2,780 $24,216 $26,996
2014/15 $60,426 $3,021 $25,199 $28,221
2015/16 $63,668 $3,183 $25,704 $28,887
2016/17 $63,207 $3,160 $26,112 $29,272
Closing Balance $67,598      

Modelled outcomes by SuperRatings show 5 year average net benefit results taking into account historical earnings, fees and drawdown amount of 5% p.a. of the main balanced investment options of 16 Industry SuperFunds’ retirement income products during the first 5 years of retirement. Example assumes the average 5 year Industry SuperFund investment return of 11.66% p.a., starting balance of $50,000, starting age of 65, home is rented, access to the full Age Pension including rent assistance, single, no other assets or income sources available. Modelling as at 30 June 2017. Capital growth will not continue throughout retirement. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance. Outcomes vary between individual funds.  Consider a fund’s Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and your personal financial situation, needs or objectives, which are not accounted for in this information, before making an investment decision. For more details about the SuperRatings modelling see the Assumptions page.

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