How Bad Is My Super? Am I Paying Too Many Fees?

So this is what the annual statement of my super looks like.
Btw it's sunsuper, Are the fees normal or am I paying too much?
About me: casual @ Domino's

(statement of super acc)

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    Your fees from super aren't unreasonable, based on my calculations you could reduce your fees by about 40% by moving to hostplus, which I've heard a lot of good things about. However, I would recommend cancelling your super insurance. For your super balance, it's not really going to be worth it, and if you're not looking after a family, as a casual, there's no real point. If you're really keen on personal insurance, I would look through your plan, and compare it to other insurers.

    • +2 votes

      I don't see how you're arriving at the conclusion that he could reduce fees by about 40% by moving to Hostplus.

      Also worth noting - whilst his balance is below $6000, funds will be capped at at charging no more than 3% in fees whilst the balance is below $6000. That was introduced as part of the Protecting Your Super Package reforms.

  • +1 vote

    Best thing you cpuld do would be to pump some money into your super account so that earnings are greater than fees, and change investment profile to aggressive if its not already.
    If you have more than one super fund i would combine them.

  • +1 vote

    Insurance with super is value adding and usually applied without you asking for it so they can boost profit.
    Check out Australian Super, consistently one of the best performers and also the bigggest.
    It is free and easy to change super fund.


    SunSuper is a good fund, I wouldn't look at switching. I moved there from AMP and it's so much better and the fees are way lower. Review your insurance to make sure it's not eating up much. If you're young and single you probably don't need stuff like death cover for example, although you may want Total Permanent Disability. There's lots of good advice on reddit at /r/ausfinance already.

    The downside of not having a lot in super is that fees are always going to be at a certain level, which means they will eat up a decent chunk until your balance is larger, at which time %-wise they become a lot easier to handle (your returns should cover the fees).

    As you have a low balance, you might also want to check your investment mix. If you're young it's probably better to have a higher-risk / growth basket rather than conservative investments like bonds and cash. None of the above is proper financial advice, I'd suggest doing some research yourself!


    There are two types of fees to look at:

    • Admin Fees
    • Investment Management Fees

    Admin Fees

    The base sun super admin fee is $1.50 per week and 0.10% of your total balance.

    That comes to about $78 per year ($1.50 x 52) in addition to 60 cents or so ($600 x 0.10%).

    Sun super generally has pretty low admin fees, but it also depends on what your balance is, as well as the investment option you choose. They all have additional investment fees.

    Your balance is pretty low at the moment, as it looks like you're just starting out. But as your balance increases over time, the admin fee will a smaller proportion of your total balance.

    Investment Fees

    These really depend on the options you choose. There are so many options and it can be bewildering for anyone to get their head around. But if I can summarise it, if you choose a balanced index fund the fees can be as low as 0.5% (Sun Super), or if you choose an actively managed fund it can be as high as +2.00%.

    I'd recommend choosing a fund with the lowest fees possible. It's often said that no-one can predict what investment will perform the best, but the one thing you can control is the fees you pay. Or something like that.

    If you are interested, let me know in the replies and I'll post some links for further reading.

  • +6 votes

    geez, the number of people advocating Hostplus and Australian Super on OzB without actually checking the facts.

    Admin Fees of ($1.50 + 0.10% of balance) per week
    Investment Fees can be as low as 0.09%pa for Aus Index Fund

    Australian Super
    Admin Fees of $2.25 per week
    Investment Fees for Australian Share Fund is 0.27%pa. Note they do not have an index fund.
    Australian Super will cost you more because of the higher weekly admin fee ($31.50 vs $21.09 for Sunsuper for this Financial Year)

    Admin Fees of $1.50 per week
    Investment Fees for Australian Share Fund is 0.70%pa. Note they do not have an index fund.

    Overall, Sunsuper is the lowest for fees. Hostplus has the lower admin fee (by 0.10%pa, which is minute for your small balance) however their Australian share fund has the highest fee. This could be because they consistently outperform and their underlying managers deserve a performance fee. However it is very difficult for fund managers to outperform over the long run. That's why Sunsuper's Index Options may be a good option for the OP due to the lower fees.

    As per other comments, OP should also consider whether the insurance is appropriate. Do they have a large loan which their spouse would have difficulty to pay if you were unable to work due to injury/death?


      The passive Hostplus IFM Australian shares option has a total investment fee of 0.07%

    • +2 votes

      A lot of people jump on the Hostplus bandwagon as they've read The Barefoot Investor…


      FYI Hostplus do have an Indexed Balanced with 0.02% Admin Fees source: 6.4


      Hostplus Indexed Balanced

      $78 admin fee p/a

      0.02% investment management fee

      Hostplus Indexed Balanced:
      37.5% Australian Equities is managed by IFM Investors (via the Passive Australian Equity Strategy)
      37.5% International Equities is managed by the BlackRock (via the Fission Indexed International Equity Fund)
      15% Fixed Income is managed by Macquarie (via the True Index Australian Fixed Interest Fund) and BlackRock (via the Global Bond Index Fund)
      10% Cash is managed by Citigroup and is held within a high interest earning at call account.



    Depending on your situation you could consider a no fee fund like student super. There are no fees but the performance is typically lower as well

    e.g. if you are nearing the end of your uni degree for example and expect to get a full time wage soon, stick with a normal fund - but definitely look into the insurance you are paying for and consider if you need it

    However if you are in year 10 and working part time, and only earn over the $450 threshold to get a super contribution in your holiday breaks, i would definitely do the math to see if it would work out better for you.


    Your super is ok. Sunsuper is one of the lowest fees super funds.

    Not financial advice but have a look at QSuper. 0 admin fees, good performance. Investment fees for shares is 0.24% which is not the lowest but very low for your situation due to your low balance. However, when your super gets larger, you may want to choose fund with lower % cost.

    1. Do you actually need the insurance? Do you have dependents? If not, get rid of it, it will suck your super dry.
    2. About your investment earnings. $4 over 3 months on about $600. That's less than 3% return, so it looks as though you've got your super in a "conservative" fund. Your fees are actually more than your investment return! At your young age (based on your super balance and your job description), you should be invested in High Growth or Aggressive Growth funds which will get you a return closer to 8 or even 12%. That will make a huge difference to your eventual pension, even though every four or five years the stock market takes a dive and you get no return or even show a loss.

    OP, you are wise beyond your years, so many young people don't take an interest in this.

  • +1 vote

    Great to see you care about your super.

    If there is anyway to contribute more, the govt matches 50% of it up to $1000. This is an instant 50% return!!


    Use this to compare fees and returns. Without knowing what investment choice you've made I can't say whether you are paying to much or not.

    Assuming you are young, you should probably be in the high growth option but fees will be less if you just split AU and INTL equities 50:50 for a similar result.

    Also, do you need the insurance?


    I work in super, my main recommendation is to ensure you consolidate all your super into one account. Most super funds can do this for you - just contact the fund you want to stay with and they will search your TFN for other super.

    Regarding insurance and which fund - there is no right or wrong answer, as there are too many variables to look at. I wouldn't recommend cancelling your insurance as it's a catch-22 type of situation. Good to have it and not need it, than to cancel it then need it. However, seek your own advice on this topic.

    Industry funds are a good place to start, but only a financial advisor can give you more detailed suggestions based on your personal circumstances.

    If you're a low income earner, consider putting money in to take advantage of the Government Co Contribution;

    Income thresholds

    There are two co-contribution income thresholds:

    a lower threshold ($38,564 for 2019–20)
    a higher threshold ($53,564 for 2019–20).

    If your total income is equal to or less than the lower threshold and you make personal contributions of $1,000 to your super account, you will receive the maximum co-contribution of $500.

    If your total income is between the two thresholds, your maximum entitlement will reduce progressively as your income rises. You will not receive any co-contribution if your income is equal to or greater than the higher threshold.

    If your co-contribution is less than $20, we will pay the minimum amount of $20.