Almost half of Australians between the ages of 50 and 70 are at risk of falling short of a comfortable retirement, according to new research released by MLC today.
The research explored the thoughts and habits of the “forgotten” low super balance Boomers, and revealed nearly half (43 per cent) of those surveyed admitted to having a superannuation balance of less than $100,000.
Additionally, 33 per cent of this age group reported having $50,000 or less in their super account, falling extremely short of what is recommended a single retiree needs for a comfortable retirement (over $545,000).[i]
Lara Bourguignon, General Manager of Customer Experience, Superannuation at MLC, believes that all Australians should enjoy retirement – regardless of their financial situation.
“Australia has a high level of poverty among retirees, and we believe that super is one of the greatest tools we have to change this.”
“While these results are concerning, we want to remind people in this age group that it’s not too late for them to take action and better understand their holistic wealth position as they prepare for retirement.”
Ms Bourguignon said there are a number of steps Australians can take to maximise their super balance in their final years of work, and to structure their portfolios to make the most of what they do have when they’re in retirement.
“For example, we know some of the people in this age group have other assets such as property in their name beyond super, which is an important factor for them to consider when planning for retirement.”
“If they don’t have other assets, engaging with their super fund may prove to be a cost effective way for them to access advice in lieu of seeing a financial adviser,” Ms Bourguignon said.
Of those with a retirement saving of under $100,000, the research also revealed 42 per cent only became concerned about the balance of their retirement savings in their 50s, while over 30 per cent admitted they never checked their super balance.
“Sticking your head in the sand will often lead to unnecessary stress, and that’s why our focus at MLC is to help and educate every generation on the importance and benefits of super,” Ms Bourguignon said.
“We do this by engaging these members strategically, and identifying those who fall into this category and providing them more information on risk, opportunity, and maximising super before and after they’ve retired.”
Living the life they have now, well into retirement
Being able to maintain their standard of living in retirement is a real concern for those in their 50s and 60s, with half of respondents (50 per cent) believing their current lifestyle will be impacted negatively in retirement.
The research comes after MLC launched its Life Unchanging promise earlier this year, with the aim of helping Australians of all generations maximise their wealth and enjoy the lives they have now, well into retirement.
“We know that just under three quarters of those with a low super balance believe it is unrealistic for them to improve their retirement savings at this stage of their life,” Ms Bourguignon said.
“At MLC, we want to play a role in changing that mentality. By helping these Australians boost their savings ahead of retirement, and assisting them in developing a plan for the next five to ten years, they might not have to miss out on the things they love in life.”
To find out more, visit mlc.com.au.
MLC is part of National Australia Bank’s wealth management division. NAB is committed to providing investment, superannuation, insurance and financial advice to our corporate, institutional and retail customers. We have one of the largest financial planning networks in Australia, providing quality financial advice, insights and expertise through NAB Financial Planning, MLC Financial Planning, MLC Advice, Godfrey Pembroke, Garvan Financial Planning, Apogee Financial Planning and Meritum.