It’s every Australian’s dream to retire earlier but sometimes the ability to access our super doesn’t line up with our plans. Generally speaking, the current rules only allow you to access your super when you meet certain conditions, however, there are strategies that your financial adviser can help you put in place to get a head start on your golden years.

Whilst superannuation is an amazing investment vehicle, unfortunately, the downside is the lack of access to funds before a condition of release is met. This means money is locked away for safekeeping until after you reach your preservation age. Individual circumstances will vary what this looks like for you, but for most people, this will be when you reach your 65th birthday. However, you don’t necessarily need to stop work completely to begin the process.

If you and your adviser are certain you are ready to retire, there are a few ways to take the leap. One common strategy is the Transition to Retirement Pension. A person who has reached their preservation age but is still working full-time or part-time can commence an income stream from their super. This means you can draw down a regular tax-effective payment from your superannuation, within some pre-set limits. This can allow you to begin reducing your working hours and top-up your income with your accrued superannuation, letting you begin to enjoy more time doing the things you love without sacrificing the income needed to do this.

You may have assets outside of your superannuation that you can tap into with the help of your adviser. For example, income-producing property or shares can be used to kick start your retirement, and if you have planned far enough ahead you may also have some investment schemes put in place as well. Depending on the details of your retirement, you may also have long-service leave accrued, retirement benefits or even some approved workplace early retirement schemes that may be of access to you. These will be dependent on your circumstances so it’s important to ensure you receive guidance from a licensed financial adviser to get the most out of your situation.

Don’t wait until you’re too close to retirement to get planning. Get in contact with us and begin the process of preparing your future with a complimentary, hassle-free review of your super.