Fees

Superannuation funds charge fees or charges for looking after your superannuation account. Financial advisers can charge fees (or commissions) for providing you with financial advice and monitoring your investment portfolio.

If you run a self-managed super fund, you may have administration fees, ATO supervisory levy, audit fees and actuarial fees The types of fees that you may encounter include entry fees, administration fees, exit fees, investment management fees, contribution fees, switching fees, financial advice fees and trailing commissions.


Administration fees cover the general running of the fund. A person pays this fee, and often other fees, annually to be a member of a given fund; some funds charge higher fees than others.

Adviser service fees are commission paid to an adviser for recommending a fund.

Contribution fees are upfront fees payable to an adviser or a financial organisation on contributions an individual makes to a retail superannuation fund.

Exit fees are charged by a fund upon withdrawal or transfer of a benefit.

Set out below are all SuperGuide articles explaining Fees.

Guest contributor: How to spot an independent financial adviser

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Just because a financial planner’s business card doesn’t display the logo of a bank or insurance company doesn’t mean he or she is independent. Last month Roy Morgan Research surveyed 40,000 people on the perceived independence of their financial planner. It turns out that a disturbing number are … [Read more...]

Super fees: Top 10 cheapest funds in Australia

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Note: This article contains the latest available fee information as at September 2014. In this article you can find the cheapest super funds and the cheapest pension funds. We update this article periodically with fee data issued by SelectingSuper rating company. Latest update was September 2014, … [Read more...]

Super for beginners, part 11: Is my super fund good enough?

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Q: I have my super with a major financial organisation. I’m wondering, are they a good company to be dealing with? I feel that their fees are a bit high: based on an investment amount of $300,000 the MER amount is $6,600 (2.2%) plus a monthly admin fee of $8.50. What are your thoughts on this … [Read more...]

SMSF: How much does a DIY super fund cost? (updated figures)

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Note: Article updated in June 2014, and enhanced with an extra table outlining fees for small and large SMSF account balances.This Q&A includes the latest SMSF cost data released in December 2013 by the ATO, and data released by ASIC in September 2013. The next SMSF cost update is expected to be … [Read more...]

Are SMSF audits too expensive? (updated figures)

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Note: Every year, the ATO publishes the average audit fees incurred by SMSFs. This Q&A contains data for financial year ending 30 June 2012 (latest available as at June 2014). We have retained all comments from earlier versions of article. The next update, for compliance data up to 30 June 2013, … [Read more...]

Dear financial advisers: choose to be magnificent, not mediocre

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I believe an independent, qualified financial adviser, focused on the best interests of the client can be a valuable partner for any individual’s or family’s wealth creation plans, along with excellent tax advice from an accountant. I assumed that the majority of the financial advising industry … [Read more...]

A quick summary: 2013/2014 Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook

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Say goodbye to the promised Budget surplus by 2016/2017, one of the many carrots the Coalition used to get Australians to vote for them in the September 2013 election. According to Federal Treasurer, Joe Hockey, the budget blowout is because… everything is Labor’s fault. Hockey claims the Coalition … [Read more...]

How much do your super fund trustees get paid?

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Note: This article includes the remuneration data for trustee boards and executives, and related party transactions, for major industry super funds (Cbus, Equip, HESTA, AustralianSuper,CareSuper and FIRST Super). Article last updated 12 December 2013. One of Australia’s largest super funds, Cbus, … [Read more...]

Ouch! Large super fund trustees must improve, says regulator

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The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority has ‘let it rip’ so to speak regarding the level of skills and independence of trustees of APRA-regulated super funds. In a speech at an industry conference in November 2013, and in later speeches and interviews, Helen Rowell, a member of APRA, has put … [Read more...]

SMSFs: How much money do you need to start one?

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In late 2012, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) asked consultants Rice Warner to examine whether there was a minimum cost-effective fund balance for an SMSF. The final report was released publicly in September 2013, and ASIC has asked for industry feedback on the … [Read more...]