An SMSF is a private superannuation fund that you manage yourself, regulated by the Australian Taxation Office. SMSFs can have up to four members. All members must be trustees (or directors if there is a corporate trustee) and the trustees are responsible for the decisions made by the fund. If you have an SMSF, you are responsible for managing it and complying with all relevant laws.
It is generally agreed that there are a number of benefits of an SMSF.
Control - the trustees make the decisions and therefore can determine where their money is invested.
Asset allocation – it follows that if the trustees have the choice of where their money is invested then they also have more control over the asset allocation of their funds with access to Australian shares, international shares, direct property, indirect property, term deposits and other income investments. Generally all superannuation funds are restricted from borrowing, other than in some exceptional circumstances. However, the laws provide that investments (usually property) can be acquired whereby the SMSF also enters into a borrowing arrangement and this can provide a significant advantage to an SMSF. The process needs careful consideration beforehand to ensure that the relevant compliance issues are met as part of the process.
Tax strategies – income tax laws apply to all superannuation funds and the rates of taxation presently range from 0% to 15%. By careful consideration of tax strategies and other planning options you are in the best position to minimise the taxation that applies on your investments.
Transparency – your SMSF provides you with better transparency concerning investment decisions and gives complete visibility over taxation treatment.
Cost – the costs of running and administering the fund are not based on a percentage of the value of the fund. Administration costs are generally related to the time taken to prepare reports and address relevant compliance matters. An audit is required and again, the cost is related to the requirements of the Australian Taxation Office as regulator and not to the value of the fund. The asset allocation may have some impact on the overall audit cost. Investment costs relate to the type and frequency of transactions.
Our service levels are aimed to work with the Trustees of the superannuation fund to provide you with the level of support that you require. This may involve providing administration and compliance services, liaising with investment providers (including stock brokers, estate agents), or providing a total service of strategy, investment and compliance.
As part of your SMSF journey we can help with:
Establishing your fund:
Annual Compliance Services
Portfolio Administration Services
Superannuation Advisory Services
All services are provided on a “time costed” basis and so trustees can influence the cost by ensuring that all information required to administer the fund is provided on a timely and an efficient basis. The tasks are matched to the level of skill required to provide the service/advice.
We welcome the opportunity to discuss with you how we, at CMA Collins Mellody, can help you maximise your opportunities to grow your wealth through your Self Managed Superannuation Fund.