My SMSF – a shared responsibility

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Name: Graeme
Age: 60
Other members of your SMSF: My wife

Where do you live? Newcastle

How long have you had your SMSF?
We started it up around four years ago.

Why did you start it up?
I wanted to have more control over our investments. We were in a retail fund before that, which was ok, but I just wanted to be more involved.

How big is it?
Let’s just say it’s a reasonable sum and much more than the minimum suggested balance of $250,000.

Is it more or less difficult to manage than you thought it would be?
I have a financial adviser who helps, so it’s not that hard. Personally I would be happy to do it myself but my wife wanted to use a financial adviser in case something happened to me. She felt she wouldn’t be able to take control if I wasn’t around.

Are you glad you have it?
Yes I am. I would be happy to do the investments myself, but it’s not just my money, it’s our money, and my wife is probably right to be careful.

Do you use an adviser or other kind of service provider?
The financial adviser helps with investments, and suggests what to do, but they also help with the administration and the tax side of things. They do more on the accounting side.

Are you pleased with its performance?
Yes I am, it’s done just as well as the big funds, if not better, since we’ve had it.

Where are you invested and what is your asset allocation?
At the moment, we’re mainly in cash but that’s only because of my view of the market, which is pretty conservative at the moment. I believe, and so does our adviser, that we could be in for a correction and a lot of companies are overvalued. But in terms of sector allocation, I do like the yield-producing sectors, like the financials and Telstra. I also have a bit of “play money” on the side where I’ve invested in some more speculative stocks in the mining sector. They’ve had their good and bad days.

What stage is it in?
The fund is in both pension and accumulation mode, its setup is fairly straightforward at the moment.

Would you recommend SMSFs to your friends and family?
Yes, if you’re prepared to put a bit of time in to it. There’s a lot involved these days. Gone are the days where you could just buy and hold or set and forget. If you’re setting one up to just save on fees you probably shouldn’t do it. You also need to have an interest in equities, and a reasonable amount, which is, as they say, more than $250,000.

Important: This content has been prepared without taking account of the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular individual. It does not constitute formal advice. Consider the appropriateness of the information in regards to your circumstances.


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