RateCity.com.au
powering smart financial decisions
RateCity.com.au

Investment Options

Super Balance

Show Online Partners Only?

We provide links to our Online Partners. If you click through to an Online Partner, you can get more product information, apply for or purchase the product and RateCity may earn a fee for referring you. This is one of the ways RateCity makes money and how we can offer our comparison service to you for free. See how we make money for more.

Sort by

Default
Product

Acumen Super

Past 5-year return
7.13

% p.a

FYTD return

1.53

% p.a

Company
Calc fees on 50k

$718

Features
Advisory services
Death insurance
Income protection
Online access
Term deposits
Variety of options
SuperRatings awards
SuperRatings Platinum 2022 MyChoice Super15 Yr Platinum Performance 2007-2022
Go to site

Core Strategy

Embed

Superannuation funds we compare at RateCity

Learn more about superannuation

Finding the right super fund can be difficult, particularly if you don’t know where to start.

Superannuation funds like REST Super have advantages and disadvantages that you should consider, when determining whether the fund is the right choice.

We’re going to look at some of the main traits of super funds in Australia and the factors you should consider when comparing superannuation funds, to make sure your nest egg performs as strongly as possible. 

What is a superannuation fund?

A superannuation fund in an investment vehicle designed to help workers accumulate funds for their post-working life. 

Employers are required by law to make contributions to the super fund you nominate – such as REST Super – which are pooled and invested by professionals with a view to increase the superannuation fund members’ wealth. 

In many cases, super fund members are also permitted to make voluntary contributions to increase their balance. 

Are there different types of superannuation funds?

There are several different types of super funds, and it’s important to be aware of this and the way these funds differ when comparing superannuation options for your future. The range of options includes:

  • Industry funds – These are funds set up for professionals of a specific industry, although many are open for anyone to join. An example would be REST Super, which primarily caters for professionals in the retail sector. Industry super funds work on a not-for-profit basis, with an ultimate view to provide maximum returns for members. 
  • Retail funds – These superannuation funds work a little differently. Retail super funds are run by for-profit institutions such as banks. While they also aim to generate value for their members, retail super funds also aim to provide returns for their shareholders.
  • Self-managed superannuation funds – With an SMSF, your money is in your own hands, and you make your investments directly, rather than having it sit as part of a professionally managed pooled fund. There are advantages and disadvantages to this investment strategy. While an SMSF might grant you access to a broader spectrum of investment options and the potential to lower your taxes, you also potentially expose your nest egg to significant market risk. 

What factors should I consider when choosing a fund?

When you’re in the market for a super funds and comparing super fund options, it’s important to consider the following factors to make sure you’ve got the best choice possible:

  • Performance – Super funds like REST Super are required to provide details on how investments made by the fund have performed over time. This can be useful when comparing super funds and finding which ones on average are providing the best returns, although previous performance should not be regarded as a guarantee of future success. 
  • Fees – Another factor to consider when comparing funds like REST Super is the fees you’re expected to pay as a member. Super funds generally have administration, account-keeping, investment and transfer fees, and these can add up and eat into your overall super balance. Make you are comfortable with the fees before signing up. 
  • Investment strategy – Different super funds take a different approach to investment. Some funds target aggressive, growth-driven investments that may risk short-term loss, with a view to maximise returns over the long term. Other funds might adopt a more conservative approach, to make sure member’s funds are protected in the event of a bad year. Funds can also take a balanced approach, with a mixture of those type of investments. When you’re comparing super funds it’s important to make sure the one you’re going with has an investment strategy that’s aligned with your plans and finance goals. 
  • Added extras – Many super funds have added extras to entice customers, and these services can make the difference when you’re comparing superannuation funds. A superannuation fund like REST Industry Super might offer a range of benefits like life insurance, income protection insurance and financial advice, and it’s important to consider the benefits of these services when determining which superannuation fund is the best for you. 

Where can I get more information about super funds?

If you want more information about REST Super, or any other type of super fund, there is a range of avenues you can choose to inform you which one is the best choice for your situation:

  • Comparison sites – Super comparison sites like RateCity provide a detailed rundown of the pros and cons of many funds, so you can compare super funds easily. 
  • Product disclosure statements (PDS) – These documents have crucial details about your fund, so it’s important to review them before signing the dotted line. 
  • The fund itself – It can also be useful to get the information from the horse’s mouth, so it’s an idea to check the super fund’s website, or even give the super fund a call.

Today's top superannuation

Frequently asked questions

What is a superannuation fund?

A superannuation fund is an institution that is legally allowed to hold and invest your superannuation. There are more than 200 different superannuation funds in Australia. They come in five different types:

  • Retail funds
  • Industry funds
  • Public sector funds
  • Corporate funds
  • Self-managed super funds

Retail funds are usually run by banks or investment companies.

Industry funds were originally designed for workers from a particular industry, but are now open to anyone.

Public sector funds were originally designed for people working for federal or state government departments. Most are still reserved for government employees.

Corporate funds are arranged by employers for their employees.

Self-managed super funds are private superannuation funds that allow people to directly invest their money.

How many superannuation funds are there?

There are more than 200 different superannuation funds.

What is the difference between accumulation and defined benefit funds?

A majority of Australians are in accumulation funds. These funds grow according to the amount of money invested and the return on that money.

A minority of Australians are in defined benefit funds – many of which are now closed to new members. These funds give payouts according to specific rules, such as how long the worker has been with their employer and their final salary before they retired.

How do you create a superannuation account?

Before you create a superannuation account, you’ll need to check if you’re allowed to choose your own fund. Most Australians can, but this option doesn’t apply to some workers who are covered by industrial agreements or who are members of defined benefits funds.

Assuming you are able to choose your own fund, the next step should be research, because there are more than 200 different superannuation funds in Australia.

Once you’ve decided on your preferred superannuation fund, head to that provider’s website, where you should be able to fill in an online application or download the appropriate forms. You’ll need your tax file number (assuming you don’t want to be charged a higher tax rate), your contact details and your employer’s details (if you’re employed).

How do you set up superannuation?

Before you set up a superannuation account, you’ll need to check if you’re allowed to choose your own fund. Most Australians can, but this option doesn’t apply to some workers who are covered by industrial agreements or who are members of defined benefits funds.

Assuming you are able to choose your own fund, the next step should be research, because there are more than 200 different superannuation funds in Australia.

Once you’ve decided on your preferred superannuation fund, head to that provider’s website, where you should be able to fill in an online application or download the appropriate forms. You’ll need your tax file number (assuming you don’t want to be charged a higher tax rate), your contact details and your employer’s details (if you’re employed).

What are ethical investment superannuation funds?

Ethical investment funds limit themselves to making ‘ethical’ investments (which each fund defines according to its own principles). For example, ethical funds might avoid investing in companies or industries that are linked to human suffering or environmental damage.

How do I change my superannuation fund?

Changing superannuation funds is a common and straightforward process. You can do it through your MyGov account or by filling out a rollover form and sending it to your new fund. You’ll also have to provide proof of identity.

How do you open a superannuation account?

Opening a superannuation account is simple. When you start a job, your employer will give you what’s called a ‘superannuation standard choice form’. Here’s what you need to complete the form:

  • The name of your preferred superannuation fund
  • The fund’s address
  • The fund’s Australian business number (ABN)
  • The fund’s superannuation product identification number (SPIN)
  • The fund’s phone number
  • A letter from the fund trustee confirming that the fund is a complying fund; or written evidence from the fund stating it will accept contributions from your new employer; or details about how your employer can make contributions to the fund

You might want to provide your tax file number as well – while it’s not a legal obligation, it will ensure your contributions will be taxed at the (lower) superannuation rate.

What superannuation details do I give to my employer?

When you start a job, your employer will give you what’s called a ‘superannuation standard choice form’. Here’s what you need to complete the form:

  • The name of your preferred superannuation fund
  • The fund’s address
  • The fund’s Australian business number (ABN)
  • The fund’s superannuation product identification number (SPIN)
  • The fund’s phone number
  • A letter from the fund trustee confirming that the fund is a complying fund; or written evidence from the fund stating it will accept contributions from your new employer; or details about how your employer can make contributions to the fund

You should also provide your tax file number – while it’s not a legal obligation, it will ensure your contributions will be taxed at the (lower) superannuation rate.

How do I choose the right superannuation fund?

Different superannuation funds charge different fees, offer different insurances, offer different investment options and have different performance histories.

So you need to ask yourself these four questions when comparing superannuation funds:

  • How many fees would I have to pay and what would they cost?
  • What insurances are available and how much would they cost?
  • What investment options does it offer? How would they match my risk profile and financial needs?
  • How have these investment options performed historically?

Can I choose a superannuation fund or does my employer choose one for me?

Most people can choose their own superannuation fund. However, you might not have this option if you are a member of certain defined benefit funds or covered by certain industrial agreements. If you don’t choose a superannuation fund, your employer will choose one for you.

How do I combine several superannuation accounts into one account?

The process used to consolidate several superannuation accounts into one is the same process used to change superannuation funds. This can be done through your MyGov account or by filling out a rollover form and sending it to your chosen fund.

What happens to my superannuation when I change jobs?

You can keep your superannuation fund for as long as you like, so nothing happens when you change jobs. Please note that some superannuation funds have special features for people who work with certain employers, so these features may no longer be available if you change jobs.

What fees do superannuation funds charge?

Superannuation funds can charge a range of fees, including:

  • Activity-based fees – for specific, irregular services, such as splitting an account after a divorce
  • Administration fees – to cover the cost of managing your account
  • Advice fees – for personal investment advice
  • Buy/sell spread fees – when you make contributions, switches and withdrawals
  • Exit fees – when you close your account
  • Investment fees – to cover the cost of managing your investments
  • Switching fees – when you choose a new investment option within the same fund

How is superannuation calculated?

Superannuation is calculated at the rate of 9.5 per cent of your gross salary and wages. So if you had a salary of $50,000, your superannuation would be 9.5 per cent of that, or $4,750. This would be paid on top of your salary.

The ‘superannuation guarantee’, as it is known, has been at 9.5 per cent since the 2014-15 financial year. It is scheduled to rise to 10.0 per cent in 2021-22, 10.5 per cent in 2022-23, 11.0 per cent in 2023-24, 11.5 per cent in 2024-25 and 12.0 per cent in 2025-26.

Is superannuation compulsory?

Superannuation is compulsory. Generally speaking, it can’t be touched until you’re at least 55 years old.

How do you get superannuation?

You’re automatically entitled to superannuation if:

  • You’re over 18 and earn more than $450 before tax in a calendar month
  • You’re under 18, you work more than 30 hours per week and you earn more than $450 before tax in a calendar month

Can I transfer money from overseas into my superannuation account?

Yes, you can transfer money from overseas into your superannuation account – under certain conditions. First, you must provide your tax file number to your fund. Second, if you are aged between 65 and 74, you must have worked at least 40 hours within 30 consecutive days in a financial year. (Australians under 65 aren’t subject to a work test; Australians aged 75 and over cannot receive contributions to their superannuation account.)

Money transferred from overseas will generally count to both your concessional contributions limit and your non-concessional contributions limit. You will have to pay income tax on the applicable fund earnings component of any money transferred from overseas. You might also be liable for excess contributions tax.

How much is superannuation in Australia?

Superannuation in Australia is currently 9.5 per cent – which means that your employer must pay you superannuation equivalent to 9.5 per cent of your salary.

The ‘superannuation guarantee’, as it is known, has been at 9.5 per cent since the 2014-15 financial year. It is scheduled to rise to 10.0 per cent in 2021-22, 10.5 per cent in 2022-23, 11.0 per cent in 2023-24, 11.5 per cent in 2024-25 and 12.0 per cent in 2025-26.

How does superannuation work?

Superannuation is paid by employers to employees, at least once every three months. The ‘superannuation guarantee’ is currently 9.5 per cent – which means that your employer must pay you superannuation equivalent to 9.5 per cent of your salary. The guarantee is scheduled to rise to 10.0 per cent in 2021-22, 10.5 per cent in 2022-23, 11.0 per cent in 2023-24, 11.5 per cent in 2024-25 and 12.0 per cent in 2025-26.

Superannuation is generally taxed at 15 per cent. However, if you earn less than $37,000, you will be automatically reimbursed up to $500 of the tax you paid. Also, if your income plus concessional superannuation contributions exceed $250,000, you will also be charged Division 293 tax. This is an extra 15 per cent tax on your concessional contributions or the amount above $250,000 – whichever is lesser.

You can withdraw your superannuation when you meet the ‘conditions of release’. The conditions of release say you can claim your super when you reach:

  • Age 65
  • Your ‘preservation age’ and retire
  • Your preservation age and begin a ‘transition to retirement’ while still working