As you may have heard once or twice, super is a long-term investment. It’s your money, being held and invested for you in a structure run by super fund trustees, for your retirement.
This means that you don’t have to feel like you’re on the trading room floor on the ASX.
However, it’s still important to make sure you think about where and how your super is invested every so often by reviewing your investment options.
There are a couple of key occasions when you may want to review your options.
Watch this short video to learn how investing your super works:
When your investment option reaches its stated time horizon
Each investment option is built with a specific time horizon in mind – in other words, it’s been built to deliver on its return target or objective over a specific period of time. This time horizon is determined in line with the design of the option itself, or the mix of assets it is invested in and the degree of risk it carries.
Our Aggressive option, for example, has a time horizon of at least 10 years, while our Growth option has a time horizon of at least seven years, and Balanced at least five.
If you have been invested in a particular option for the same length of time as its listed time horizon, this may be a good time to review whether this option is still right for you, or whether another option better aligns with your retirement goals.
When you go through a major life event, or your goals change
As John Lennon sang, life is what happens to you when you’re busy making other plans – and life seems to happen a lot when you get older and get stuck into your career.
While your super may not always be top of mind when you go through a big life event, such as getting married or divorced, having a child, buying or selling a house, or even getting a new job, it’s actually the perfect time to consider what the event could mean for your long-term financial needs or goal. And in turn, it’s the perfect time to review whether your investment options are right to help you achieve your goals and fulfil your needs.
When you review your overall financial picture
For many people, super is just one piece of the financial pie.
Whether it’s a simple savings account you transfer some of your wages to every month, a term deposit you have stashed away, a property, or a share portfolio, it’s important to think about the different roles your various assets have to play, as well as how they are working together to achieve your financial goals.
With this in mind, it may be worthwhile setting time aside every so often to review your broader financial situation, and how your super fits in. Any broader change, such as buying or selling a property or upping your investment in your share portfolio, for example, could be a good time to review your investment options.
What if my super is invested in Glidepath?
If you are a member of our Gateway division and didn’t make an investment choice when you joined, your super has been invested in Glidepath, our automated investment option.
Glidepath has four investment stages – Take-Off, Altitude, Cruising, and Destination – and it works by adjusting the growth and risk profile of your super investment over the course of your career.
This means that the way your super is invested automatically changes every few years, depending on your age.
Watch this short video to learn how Glidepath works:
Which Glidepath stage am I in?
The stage of Glidepath you are currently invested in depends on your year of birth.
How to grow your super and achieve your other financial goals
Retirement is usually decades away, while the mortgage needs to be paid now – but your immediate goals and your retirement goals don’t have to be mutually exclusive. It may not take much to achieve both.