How much super is enough?

How much super you need depends on the type of lifestyle you’d like after you stop working.

The ASFA Retirement Standard outlines how much Australians need to fund a modest or comfortable standard of living after they stop work.

The Retirement Standard states that as at March 2016 Australians aged around 65 need the following amounts to support their lifestyle:

  • Modest lifestyle: $23,651 pa single, $34,064 pa couple. Allows for basics, but little else.
  • Comfortable lifestyle: $42,893 pa single, $58,922 pa couple. Adds enjoyment, comfort, style, travel and health insurance.

How much super do you need to achieve your preferred income?

The following table estimates how much super you need to achieve a particular retirement income.

To find how much you should aim for, first find how much income you’d like in retirement and then how long you’re likely to be retired for. Once you have your retirement goal in mind, find out some easy things you can do to get there.

Estimated yearly retirement income Expected number of years in retirement
15 years 25 years 35 years
$30,000 $339,623 $477,194 $570,131
$50,000 $566,039 $795,323 $950,219
$70,000 $792,455 $1,113,452 $1,330,306
$90,000 $1,018,870 $1,431,581 $1,710,394
$120,000 $1,358,494 $1,908,775 $2,280,525
$160,000 $1,811,325 $2,545,033 $3,040,700
The amounts are calculated assuming investment returns exceed inflation by 4% pa. The calculations don’t allow for investment returns on your current balance. Investment returns may be positive or negative. Source: Mercer, March 2008