April 20, 2014
Living for the moment is something most of us do in early adulthood, but as we get a bit older, a few home truths start to settle in. Like, the fact that life is not just about today or a few months down the track – we start to think about what life is going to look like after work, in our 70s, and increasingly our 80s or older.
Our 30s bring a range of milestones – often we feel more financially stable; we may have bought a home or invested in property or started a family. All good things for the now, but it is also time to think about the future further down the track – the decisions we made today and how they may affect life after work.
Here are a few key tips for those in their 30s looking to super charge their super and bump up savings:
Super Health Check
By now, your Super will be taking shape and turning into a sizeable sum. But could it be doing better. Get out your documentation, do some research or get some advice to see if your Super is working hard enough – relative to your risk comfort levels. As a starting point, check out the Rate my Super tool to compare how funds perform over time.
A little bit now is huge down the track
The more you put into your Super now, the more time you give it to work for you. Even $15 or $20 a week now makes a significant difference with interest working in your favour, not to mention the tax benefits of salary sacrifice.
Mums in their 30s
Taking time out of work to start a family can have a significant impact on your Super. Keep it front and centre – even when you’re not working by considering things like making additional contributions to your Super before Maternity Leave or Spousal Contributions when you are out of the workplace.
Up for a bit of risk
This is a completely personal choice and will depend on your comfort levels, but your 30s is the time to consider whether you would benefit from placing some money into higher-risk funds. Because most fund providers – unless you specify – place your money into more conservative accounts, you may choose to up the return (and the risk) by changing to high growth investments. It’s a decision that requires some thought, advice and more attention to how your fund/s are performing, but this is the time to make that call.
Protecting the now, protects the future
We often find that people start looking at insurance more seriously in their 30s, for various reasons. Often people have more to protect – assets and family – and the ten foot tall and bullet proof idea of ourselves starts to fade.
Income is the greatest asset we have but is often overlooked in favour of tangible assets. In our 30s we are in or approaching our strongest earning years – the years that pay off the house; make investments; provide for our children etc. At the risk of appearing to scaremonger, all of this can become a lot harder if our ability to earn is diminished or eliminated through some unforeseen event.
Take a bit of time to consider your current obligations, plans and aspirations and what you would need should something take you out of the workforce for a short or long period of time.