SMSF borrowing (gearing)

The general rule is that your self-managed super fund can’t borrow money, although like all rules the ‘no borrowing’ rule has some exceptions.

SMSF trustees need to understand the difference between direct borrowing and indirect borrowing and the special rules that apply to each exception. Your fund can’t directly borrow money, except in two instances: if you need cash to pay a member’s benefit, or if you need cash urgently to settle a share transaction.

Your super fund can also indirectly borrow money. A SMSF can invest in managed funds that borrow money (geared managed funds), or even invest in instalment warrants, warrants, options or contracts for differences (CFDs).

The latest ‘hot’ trend in the SMSF world is the opportunity for a SMSF to indirectly borrow to purchase fund assets using a limited recourse borrowing arrangement.

Set out below are all SuperGuide articles explaining SMSF borrowing (gearing).

Oops! Top 10 SMSF boo-boos for 2015 financial year

Note: Every year, the ATO publishes the top compliance mistakes made by SMSF trustees. This article contains data up to 30 June 2015 (latest available as at January 2016). The next update, for compliance data up to 30 June 2016, will be available in late 2016.The ATO has published the top 10 … [Read more...]

SMSF supervisory levy can’t fix large fund issues

For those of you with long memories, many of the recent SMSF compliance changes reported on the SuperGuide website were originally recommended by the Cooper review (review of the super system). The Cooper review was named after the chair of the panel, Jeremy Cooper, and to his credit several of his … [Read more...]

SMSF trustees face bigger penalties from 2015/2016 year

SMSF trustees can expect harsher fines from this financial year (2015/2016 year) onwards with administrative penalties of up to $10,800 per trustee (including corporate trustee) for a breach of the super rules.A SMSF trustee must run his or her super fund according to the superannuation rules. … [Read more...]

SMSF compliance: ATO’s hit list for the 2015/2016 year

Each year, the ATO publicises a list of compliance areas that the regulator intends to target when reviewing SMSFs during the financial year. This is the hit list for the 2015/2016 year.Note: The ATO’s compliance approach is to deal with less serious breaches in a collaborative way with the SMSF … [Read more...]

Liberals response to Financial System Inquiry: Super and retirement summary

On 20 October 2015, the new Liberal leadership of the current Liberal government published their response to the Financial System Inquiry (FSI). For readers, it is safe to treat this response as a political document, drawing a line in the sand for the next federal election, due some time in … [Read more...]

SMSF investment: Where can I find information about SMSF borrowing?

Q: I’ve just finished reading DIY Super For Dummies and found it really helpful. What interested me was the borrowing options for SMSFs. We already own a property in our fund and we are looking at using borrowings for financing our next fund purchase. In your book you mention a joint venture to … [Read more...]

SMSF basics: Can my DIY super fund borrow money?

The general rule is that your super fund can’t borrow money, although like all rules the ‘no borrowing’ rule has some exceptions. SMSF trustees need to understand the difference between direct borrowing and indirect borrowing and the special rules that apply to each exception.A relaxation of the … [Read more...]

Government confirms green light on SMSF borrowing

On 20 October 2015, the Liberal government confirmed that SMSF borrowing, through the use of limited recourse borrowing arrangements, continues to remain a legitimate financing option for SMSFs. The government’s position was announced as part of its response to the Financial System Inquiry (FSI) … [Read more...]

SMSF investment: Can my DIY super fund invest in direct property?

Q: I am interested in setting up a self-managed fund. I would like to know more about the rules for purchasing property in a super fund, and whether it is possible to use borrowings to do so.A: A self-managed (DIY) super fund can invest in all types of property, including residential, … [Read more...]

SMSF borrowing: Investing in property (what’s OK and NOT OK)

If you run a self-managed superannuation fund, you can invest in all types of real property, including residential property, commercial property, industrial property and even a farm (under certain circumstances).Before September 2007, the capacity to use borrowed money to purchase an SMSF asset, … [Read more...]