Grow your super

By adding a little extra when you can, you’ll super-charge your savings over the long term. Check out the many ways you can grow your super faster.

Salary sacrifice

Boost your super and you could reduce your taxable income.

What is it?

With salary sacrifice, you ask your employer to make regular or one-off extra contributions into your super from your before-tax salary. These contributions are in addition to the usual 9.5% employer contribution.

Salary sacrifice contributions are generally taxed at 15% when they’re paid into your super. For most people, this is much less than the marginal tax rate you would pay.

Your taxable salary is reduced by the amount of salary sacrifice contributions you make in a financial year. This could mean you pay less tax on your take-home salary. 

Generally, making extra before-tax contributions is tax-effective if you earn more than $37,000 each year. If you earn less than this, you may not benefit from the tax advantages of salary sacrifice.

Example:

You earn $75,000 a year before-tax and salary sacrifice $5,000 a year to super. This will reduce your annual taxable income to $70,000.

How to set up salary sacrifice

  1. Talk to your employer and make sure they can accommodate salary sacrifice.
  2. Copy the text below and paste into a new email.
  3. Add your details and send it to your employer or payroll person.

Email template

Hi Payroll

I'd like to arrange to have extra contributions made to my Spirit Super account through salary sacrifice.

I request the deduction of the amount shown below from my before-tax pay on a regular basis.

I authorise payroll to transfer my salary sacrifice contributions to Spirit Super.

Employee name: Enter your name

 Amount each pay period: Enter a dollar amount

Please start my salary sacrifice from this date: Enter a date ( DD MM YYYY)

Fund name: Spirit Super ABN 74 559 365 913

Super fund USI: MTA0100AU

I understand that this request remains in force until I advise payroll of any change.

I'm aware of the concessional contributions cap of $25,000.

I'm aware that pay rises or bonuses will impact the total amount of contributions that my employer is required to pay under super guarantee legislation.

 

Personal contributions

The contributions your employer makes are the foundation of your super, but you can add extra by making regular or one-off personal after-tax contributions. This will help your super grow faster.

How to make after-tax personal contributions

You can make personal contributions from your after-tax salary into your super using BPAY®. You’ll need the biller code and your reference number which are shown on your Account summary, Member statement and in Member Online.

Log in to Member Online.

Contributions caps

Before making personal after-tax contributions, you should know that there are caps to how much you can contribute to super in a financial year. If you are over this cap, you may have to pay extra tax.

Claim a tax deduction for personal after-tax contributions

You may be able to claim a tax deduction if during the financial year:

Read the Claiming tax deductions for contributions fact sheet to find out more.

We recommend you get professional advice before claiming a tax deduction.

Speak with an expert.

Example:

If you earn $90,000 per year, your 9.5% employer contribution will be $8,550. This means you could add an extra $16,450 to your super each financial year and claim it as a tax deduction. 

® Registered to BPAY Pty Ltd ABN 69 079 137 518.

Government co-contribution 

The government may boost your super by up to $500 each year when you pay extra into your super.

How it works

For every $1 you pay into super from your after-tax earnings (up to $1,000 each financial year), the government may contribute up to 50 cents. That’s a boost of up to $500 in your super each year.

Are you eligible?

To receive the government co-contribution, you need to:

  • have an annual taxable income less than $54,837 in 2020-21
  • make an after-tax super contribution during the financial year
  • have 10% or more of your income from eligible employment, running a business, or both
  • be under age 71 at the end of the financial year
  • not be a temporary visa holder at any time during the relevant financial year
  • have lodged a tax return for the relevant financial year
  • not have exceeded your after-tax contributions cap for the relevant financial year
  • have a total super account balance of less than $1.6 million on 30 June of the previous financial year.

Note: you can’t get a government co-contribution for contributions you claim as a tax deduction or make through salary sacrifice.

How much can you get?

The amount you get each year will depend on your income and how much you add into super.

   Your annual super contribution amount
   $1000 $800 $500 $200
Your taxable income for 2020 Your estimated government co-contribution

$39,837 or less

$500

$400

$250

$100

$42,837

$400

$400

$250

$100

$45,837

$300

$300

$250

$100

$48,837

$200

$200

$200

$100

$51,837

$100

$100

$100

$100

$54,837 or more

$0

$0

$0

$0

 

How will you get your co-contribution?

If you're eligible, the government will pay the co-contribution directly into your super account. You don’t need to do anything. The payment will be made after you’ve lodged your tax return for the financial year you made the contribution.

Example:

You earn $35,000 a year and add an extra $15 to super each week from your take-home pay. By the end of the year, that’s an extra $780 in your super. After you've lodged your tax return for the year, you’ll get 50 cents for every $1 you paid, giving you an extra $390 in your super account.

Spouse contributions

Share the super love with your spouse or partner and you’ll both enjoy the benefits in retirement 

What is it?

Spouse contributions are personal contributions your spouse or partner can make from their after-tax salary into your super account.

How does it work?

It’s easy. Your spouse just needs to contribute money into your account from their after-tax pay. They can contribute as much as they want and can claim a tax offset for the first $3,000 contributed each year (if eligible).

How to make a spouse contribution

The easiest way for your spouse to contribute to your account is using BPAY®. They'll need your spouse biller code and your reference number. These are shown on your Account summary, Member statement and in Member Online.

How does your spouse get the tax offset?

If you earn less than $40,000 in a financial year, your spouse or partner may be able to claim a tax offset for making payments into your super account. By paying up to $3,000 into your super in a financial year, they could receive a spouse contribution tax offset of up to $540.

The tax offset reduces by $1 for every dollar of income you earn above $37,000 each year, phasing out at $40,000. Read the Boost your spouse’s super fact sheet to find out more.

Tip:

Your spouse can pay more than $3,000 into your super, but they won’t receive the spouse contribution tax offset on any amount above this. Spouse contributions count towards your after-tax contributions cap.

Learn more about contribution caps.

When your spouse makes an after-tax contribution to your super account, they can claim the tax offset in their tax return for the financial year they made the contribution.

Example:

You earn $35,000 a year and your spouse pays $5,000 into your super in the year to top up your super. When they lodge their tax return, they’ll get a $540 tax offset for the first $3,000 they contributed to your account.

Find out more

Read the Boost your spouse’s super fact sheet.

Contributions caps

To keep things fair for everyone, there are limits to how much you can contribute to super each year. 

How does it work?

There are different contributions caps for before-tax contributions and after-tax contributions.

Before-tax contributions cap

Currently, the cap is $25,000 per financial year, but you may be able to contribute more if you have unused caps from previous years. Find out more in our Super contributions fact sheet. 

The $25,000 annual cap includes the total of:

  • your employer's 9.5% super guarantee contributions
  • any salary sacrifice contributions made by your employer and
  • any tax-deductible contributions you've made.

After-tax contributions cap

Currently, the cap is $100,000 per financial year, or up to $300,000 in a three-year period if you're under age 65. If your total super balance is greater than $1.6 million at the end of the previous financial year, you can't make any after-tax contributions.

What happens if you exceed the contribution caps?

The ATO will let you know if you've gone over your limits. You can choose to either pay tax on the excess amount or withdraw the amount over your contribution limit.

Related resources

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