12 June 2013 Quick ways to get your SMSF ready for property

Before you even start contemplating property in your self-managed super fund (SMSF), there are a number of things that need to be considered, according to an industry super fund.

Club Plus Super has encouraged investors not to get over-consumed in the debates and complexities, but focus on five simple steps to put themselves in good stead for future SMSF property investing.

Club Plus Super CEO Paul Cahill provided Smart Property Investment with five steps investors can take to prepare themselves.

1)    Find and consolidate lost super
“Australians have approximately $17 billion in lost superannuation,” said Mr Cahill.
There are a number of free and easy services available to track superannuation down. This will help ensure that the principal is as large as possible, he said.

2)    Review insurance needs and get the right coverage
“Insurance is often overlooked, but can be paid for from superannuation and may prove to be a huge support for many unforeseen circumstances in life,” he said.
Many funds provide automatic insurance, however when this comes to SMSFs, it is not the case.

3)    Explore all investment options for superannuation
Regardless of whether it’s solely cash, shares, property or a combination of these assets, “it’s important to have the right investment strategy in place and to review your strategy at different stages of your life in order to achieve your future lifestyle goals”.
“With many different options available, people would be prudent to do their research and consult their financial planner to identify the right investment strategy for their particular circumstances,” he said.

4)    Contribute extra funds to superannuation
It’s worth considering being proactive with your fund while in the growth stage by contributing extra.
“While it’s often easier said than done to find extra money to contribute to superannuation, the reality is that most Australians will not have enough funds in retirement to meet their lifestyle goals and, as such, should be looking to contribute extra funds on a regular basis,” he said.

5)    If in doubt, hold a diversified portfolio
If you’re not actively looking to review your investment strategy or product, either within an SMSF or a more conventional fund, it’s worth considering looking at diversification.
“Having exposure to a wide range of asset classes and investment managers can reduce specific market risks in the short term and provide more stable, long-term returns in many instances,” he explained.

Finally, it’s also worth doing a health check on your super at present, having a look at your growth and fees and deciding whether you are happy with its performance.

Reproduced in full with permission: Smart Property Investor Quick ways to get your SMSF ready for property 31 May 2013

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