Your superannuation strategy if you’re self-employed can be one of the most important elements of your financial plan. This is largely because self-employed individuals in Australia are not required to make any superannuation contributions, which can leave you in a situation of not having enough to retire when you decide to hang up the boots.

As a self-employed person, it’s important to recognise that you can still make both concessional (tax-deductible) and non-concessional (after-tax) contributions to your super fund. If you’re unsure about which super fund to use, speak to our team here and we can assist.

Below we’ve outlined our top tips for self-employed individuals to make the most of their superannuation strategy:

Government Co-Contribution

If you earn less than $51,021 per year, you should consider making a non-concessional contribution to your super fund as you will receive a matching contribution from the Australian government up to $500. The maximum contribution applies if you earn less than $36,021, and you’ll receive $0.50 for every $1.00 you contribute. Voila…a 50% return on your investment.

Low Income Super Contributions

If you earn less than $37,000 per year, then the government may contribute a further 15%, up to $500, of your before-tax contributions that you made to your super fund during the financial year. The ATO will calculate this one for you and apply the additional funds if you’re eligible directly to your super fund.

Contributions Reserve Strategy

This can be an incredibly valuable strategy if you’ve made a large capital gain in that particular financial year, and wish to offset it as much as possible. The ‘contributions reserve’ is actually a holding account within a Self-Managed Super Fund (SMSF), whereby you can make a contribution that must be allocated by the trustee within 28 days of the contribution being made. The tax deduction can be made however, at the point at which the contribution is being made.

Let’s consider the following example:

Sally is currently working in Australia running her own bookkeeping business, and is a member of her family SMSF. Her annual concessional contributions cap is $25,000 p.a. She has made a large capital gain this year of $50,000 from the sale of shares, and wishes to offset this. Sally therefore makes a concessional contribution of $25,000 into her account within the SMSF, and a further $25,000 on 15th June (just prior to the end of the financial year), which will be allocated in July (the next financial year), within the 28 day time limit.

This allows Sally to claim the tax deduction of $50,000 within the current financial year, boost her retirement savings, and reduce her taxable income in the meantime.

Remember, your superannuation is an important retirement vehicle, and ignorance isn’t bliss. If you don’t currently have a super strategy in place, and you are self-employed, seek the right advice and ensure your retirement plan is on track.


To your financial success!

Jarrad Brown is an Australian-trained and qualified Fee-Based Financial Planner with Australian Expatriate Group, division of Global Financial Consultants Pte Ltd providing specialist financial advice and portfolio management services to international and local professionals in Singapore. Jarrad Brown is an Authorised Representative of Global Financial Consultants Pte Ltd – No: 200305462G | MAS License No: FA100035-3

Australian Expatriate Group is licensed by Global Financial Consultants in Singapore, with a team of Australian-trained, experienced and qualified, allowing us to provide specialist advice to Australians living abroad.

To learn more about how we may be able to help you, please contact us:

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General Information Only: The information on this site is of a general nature only. It does not take into account your individual financial situation, objectives or needs. You should consider your own financial position and requirements before making a decision.


*Please note that Jarrad Brown is not a tax agent or accountant and none of the content outlined here should be taken as personal advice. You should consult your tax agent and financial adviser to review your current personal finances and financial goals to consider whether this strategy is appropriate for you. I expressly disclaim all and any liability to any person or organisation, in respect of anything, and of the consequences of anything done or omitted to be done by any such person in reliance, whether whole or in part, upon the whole or any part of the contents of this.