Focusing on women and superannuation

Women's equality

Published 1 March 2021

We want to help all our members build a better future and achieve a dignified, comfortable retirement.

With International Women’s Day approaching, there is no better time to discuss the unique characteristics of women’s superannuation accounts.

It is, unfortunately, well documented that women are likely to retire in a less financially secure position compared to their male counterparts. Pay inequality and expectations that women will take extended parental leave are all factors that impact how women contribute to their superannuation, which is further compounded by lower retirement ages and longer life expectancies.

LGIAsuper, headed by CEO, Kate Farrar, has an understanding of the challenges that women face. To empower our female members to take control of their superannuation, we have compiled our team’s top tips for improving financial literacy. 

1. Check your retirement savings

The first step to planning your financial future is understanding your current superannuation status. LGIAsuper’s CEO, Kate Farrar, said it was important for women to consider if their investment strategy matched their current circumstances.

"Having a family, getting married, starting a new job or preparing to retire are all important milestones in your life," Ms Farrar said.

"It is crucial that you regularly check your superannuation balance and your investment option to ensure that both match your current appetite for risk and your future plans."

To view an estimation of your future finances, you can use LGIAsuper’s online retirement income calculator.

2. Assess your financial goals

There are a number of factors to consider when assessing how much money you need to retire. Think about how you want to live your life in retirement and any potential income sources you may have to support yourself. This could include things such as your super, investments, savings, an expected inheritance or government entitlements.

The table below (based on the ASFA retirement standard, September quarter 2020) provides rough estimates of how much both singles and couples require per year in retirement. LGIAsuper stresses that these figures will change depending on each individual’s planned lifestyle post retirement.

 

Single

Couple

Modest

$27,987

$40,440

Comfortable

$43,091

$62,083

LGIAsuper’s Women and superannuation e-learning module can be helpful in considering how much you’ll need in retirement, and create a plan to achieve your dream retirement.

3. Boost your superannuation balance

There are a number of ways to increase your superannuation balance, like adding a bit extra each week.

Salary sacrificing may be worth exploring if your marginal tax rate is higher than 15% and you can afford to take home a little less in your pay each week.  This can help reduce the amount of tax you pay while growing your super balance.

If you’ve decided that you’d like to increase your savings trajectory, LGIAsuper recommends watching the recent Women and superannuation webinar from LGIAsuper CEO, Kate Farrar, and financial adviser, Gabrielle Williams. This female focused webinar provides important information that is suited to women at all stages of their working life.

4. Effective budgeting

Finding additional funds to allocate to your superannuation is easier said than done. Effective budgeting is central to achieving this.

To find extra money it may be helpful to look at your spending habits and identify whether you could be putting extra away.

Food and clothes are areas which commonly incur excess spending, and are simple ways to retract household budgets.

The key to effective budgeting is creating a budget that allows you to treat yourself and lead a life that is enjoyable, rather than one that strips away all spending that is not a necessity.

5. Make use of government co-contributions and spouse contributions to superannuation

If your capacity to work has fallen, you may be eligible for government superannuation co-contributions or spousal superannuation contributions.

Those earning $39,837 p.a. or less are eligible for Federal funded superannuation contributions, and those earning under $54,837 have partial government benefits available to them.

Additionally, if your spouse is able to contribute to your superannuation while you’re working in a reduced capacity, they may do so.

To find out more about various superannuation contributions and benefits, call us on 1800 444 396.

Ms Farrar said it was important that women felt empowered to take control of their finances and their future.

"We want to improve retirement outcomes for all our members, and we understand the extra effort that this can take for women," she said.

"We offer a range of resources, such as webinars, that are targeted to women, which we encourage our members to take advantage of.

For superannuation advice, information and assistance - or to book a Super Health Check - contact us on 1800 444 396 or info@lgiasuper.com.au.


Super Essentials for Women webinar

We will be hosting a Super Essentials for Women webinar on Thursday 11 March 2020, 6.30-7.30pm AEST. Online bookings are now open.

Book your place on this webinar

Learn more

Watch our online tutorial to explore this topic further:

Women and superannuation