How much will your SMSF cost you? What fees will you incur?

How Much Does My SMSF Cost

It depends on how much you do yourself and how much you get others to do. But doing it yourself doesn’t necessarily save you money. There are hefty fines for getting it wrong. And some things are easy to get wrong.

Over the lifecycle of your SMSF there are at least 10 trigger points that might cost you money. Here is a quick overview.

1 – ASIC Fees to Set Up Corporate Trustee

Your SMSF must have at least one trustee – be it an individual (you) or a company. An individual trustee is free. A corporate trustee incurs an ASIC fee at registration.

2 – Trust Deed

Your SMSF is only a relationship – a relationship between trustees and members over trust property, governed by a deed. And this deed usually doesn’t come free.

3 – Bank Account

Most bank accounts are free – for example NAB, ING or Macquarie – but some charge.

4 – Professional Fees

When you engage an accountant to help you with the administration of your fund, they will probably charge you a fee. You can also engage a financial adviser to help you with the actual investment of your super.

5 – Software

Any software your accountant uses – usually Class or BGL – tends to be included in their fee. If you do it yourself, you can pay for a BGL subscription or try a free version of Excel, McLowd or Wave.

6 – Audit

Every SMSF requires an audit of its annual return by an independent auditor registered with ASIC.

7 – Actuarial Certificate

Whenever your SMSF is in hybrid mode – ie in accumulation and retirement mode – you need an actuarial certificate.

8 – Annual ASIC Fees

An individual trustee is free – although far from ideal – but a corporate trustee will incur an annual ASIC fee.

9 – SMSF Levy

The ATO will charge an SMSF levy to your tax refund or liability when you lodge your tax return. 

10 – ATO Penalties

Superannuation is a highly regulated environment where it is easy to make mistakes, which can cost you dearly.

Costs You Control

Looking at these 10 trigger points, there are two you really have control over. Professional fees for those you choose to help you and ATO penalties.

And these two often correlate with each other. Doing it all alone might increase your risk to get it wrong. Getting the help you need should reduce that risk.

If you have a question, please call or email. There might be a simple answer to your query.



SMSFs Need an ABN

Superannuation Investment Rules

SMSF To Do List


Disclaimer: numba does not provide specific financial or tax advice in this article. All information on this website is of a general nature only. It might no longer be up to date or correct. You should contact us directly or seek other accredited tax advice when considering whether the information is suitable to your circumstances.

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Last Updated on 14 March 2020