Tyson Crotty

Tyson Crotty

Tyson is a Senior Financial Adviser and Director of Finspective. Read More about Tyson

May 26, 2021

Becoming a super-powered couple is no longer a fantasy.

Before being popularised by Mary Poppins, Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious was a 1940s-word that meant ‘a fanciful formation based on super’. Ok, so I may have taken some liberties with the context of ‘super’ here, but let me roll with this!

Mary Poppins’ greatest strength was having one eye on the future. Every little action that she took in the present had a magnified impact on the endgame. But Mary wasn’t afraid to double-down! She was clever enough to allow her sidekick Bert to add that extra breath of wind under her umbrella to take her to new heights.

While I can’t put the finger on why, the mindset with superannuation and the annual contributions we receive is to consider them from an individual perspective. There are a few downsides to this old school attitude! So, here’s a spoonful of the benefits of shifting the paradigm to a super-boosted ‘couple perspective’, using some of Mary’s most memorable quotes.

‘Everything is possible, even the impossible.’

Buying an investment property to make the future brighter can seem out of reach. However, most couples have the choice to do this with money in their super. The simplified steps:

  1. Combine your super money with your spouse’s for a property deposit.
  2. You purchase an investment property using your super deposit & a super-based investment loan.
  3. You combine your super contributions & rental income to pay for the loan repayments & everyday property costs.

‘Just a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down.’

If your spouse is a low-income earner or not working currently, you could make a $3,000 superannuation spouse contribution (‘the medicine). ‘The sugar’ for eligible individuals is a $540 tax offset if you contribute up to the maximum. That’s a guaranteed 18% return on investment.

Combining your super as a couple

‘There’s nowhere to go but up!’

Currently, there’s a lot of conversation about women and super. Regardless of gender, individuals can ‘split’ up to 85% of super contributions received (including the employer) with their spouse every year. So, if an employer contributed $10,000 to an individual every year, they can move $8,500 to their spouse annually. This is a simple strategy to alter superannuation differences in couples, whether for equalisation or other purposes.

‘You’re too focused on where you’ve been to pay attention to where you’re going.’

It’s important to have a purpose when super boosting one member of a couple, particularly when choosing to decrease the other. Often, intentionally targeting for one member of a couple to have more than the other is clever planning. A perfectly designed strategy would provide a mix of early access to super, more Age Pension and lower tax in retirement.

‘Let the past take a bow. The forever is now!’

The information (including taxation) is general in nature and may not be relevant to your individual circumstances. You should refrain from doing anything in reliance on this information without first obtaining suitable professional advice.

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