SMSF advice: We’re here to help

A recent statistic from Investment Trends caught my eye:  40 per cent of SMSF trustees who stopped using an accountant in 2014 cited lack of access to a wider range of advice services and expertise. Is this because accountants don’t have the expertise or to deliver the right SMSF advice to trustees, or are they simply failing to communicate it?

This got me thinking:  Does Superfund Partners adequately communicate the advice services we have available to assist SMSF trustees?  I reckon we only do an average job of telling you about the strategic advice we can offer, and how it can help you.

This article aims to clarify exactly what our capabilities are, and when you should be seeking our advice on matters regarding your SMSF.

SMSF Advice we don’t provide

Before jumping into the advice services we can provide, there are a few areas that Superfund Partners doesn’t directly advise on when it comes to your SMSF:

  • Investment and insurance advice
  • Legal advice
  • Property investment advice
  • Personal / business taxation advice
  • Finance / lending advice

We do however work with a range of specialists in the above areas and they are all extremely competent in their respective fields.  We can provide a referral and we also encourage SMSF trustees to undertake their own research and due diligence when it comes to engaging any professional.  Superfund Partners supports choice – that is what an SMSF is all about!

SMSF Advice we do provide

Back in August, I wrote an article entitled: What SMSF ‘advice’ your accountant can give (and what is changing).

I suggest you read this article as it outlines exactly what your typical accountant can advise on, compared to an appropriately licensed specialist SMSF business like Superfund Partners.

Key areas that Superfund Partners provides services and advice include:

  • SMSF administration – including all accounting, tax return, investment reporting, trustee minutes, capital gains records, pension and contribution tracking
  • Contributions advice – tax implications, salary sacrifice arrangements, re-contribution strategies and contributions reserving
  • Pension advice – including starting a pension, stopping a pension, running a transition to retirement strategy and making lump sum payments from your SMSF
  • SMSF establishments & wind-ups – advice on setting up an SMSF, winding up / closing an SMSF and transferring benefits between retail / industry super funds and an SMSF
  • SMSF property – assistance with the required limited recourse borrowing arrangement (LRBA) structure and documentation to purchase a property using borrowings
  • Estate planning building a robust comprehensive SMSF estate plan (in conjunction with a solicitor) to ensure your SMSF benefits go where you want them on your passing

Many of the above items require licensing which many generalist accountants simply do not have.  Senior members of the Superfund Partners team including Chloe Ward, Mark Beveridge and myself are licensed to provide you with advice in these areas.

Please click here for a more detailed list of specific advice services.

Accessing our SMSF advice services

The best way to access the specialist SMSF advice services we provide is by getting in touch with your primary contact – i.e. the person that prepares your SMSF accounts. They can direct you to the appropriate person or help you directly depending on what advice you require.

As part of our SMSF administration services we review each SMSF every year and identify areas with your SMSF may need to be addressed. This could be something as simple as recommending an update to your SMSF trust deed to something as complex as utilising an anti-detriment strategy to create massive tax benefits in your SMSF that can be utilised by your family. Chloe Ward generally undertakes this annual ‘strategic review’.

All Superfund Partners SMSF administration clients are entitled to a meeting (in person or via phone / Skype) with one of our specialists each year to discuss any relevant issues.

Most SMSF advice service we provide do have additional fees attached.  Wherever possible these fees are transparent and outlined under our standard fee schedule.  For items of strategic advice that are more complex, we provide a quote upfront for the advice and its implementation.

We’re here to help

Every member of the Superfund Partners team wants to help the SMSF trustees we work with.  This could be as simple as completing your SMSF accounts in a timely and efficient manner, or involve more complex advice. The choice is up to you as the trustee of your SMSF – we are here to help – so if you have a question or need assistance please drop us an email or give us a call.

Director at Superfund Partners. I love working in the SMSF space. Self-managed super funds are more than just a savings vehicle - they enable people to truly take control of their financial situation which is key to achieving happiness. Leading the Superfund Partners team is a privilege - they are a great crew and they always put others first.