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Non-advised Australians undervaluing retirement

Australians are not seeking professional advice and as a result are “undervaluing” the cost of retirement, a report by Challenger and lobby group National Seniors Australia has found.

The report, entitled How realistic are Australian’s retirement plans?, found that of the 2,000 participants, 58 per cent said they do not need more information from advisers on budgeting in retirement given their life expectancy.

The report also found 53 per cent of pre-retirees will have less than $400,000 for retirement, well below the $544,000 ASIC estimates the average single person needs for a comfortable retirement.

“These findings are particularly alarming when you consider that the access to the age pension is only going to get tougher,” Challenger chairman, retirement income, Jeremy Cooper said.

“This new survey shows that the ‘world-class’ super system of which we boast is only half-baked when it comes to retirement,” he added.

The report indicated that only 0.3 per cent of all participants said their chief information source on life expectancy was a financial adviser.

“This survey highlights the importance of sound financial advice to many people’s wellbeing in retirement,” Mr Cooper said.

However, speaking to ifa, SPAA director, technical and professional standards, Graeme Colley said that while SPAA welcomes the findings of the report, it may be a different story for SMSF trustees. 

“Self-funded retirees are definitely better off. I mean they have much more money in their superannuation," Mr Colley said. "We think they are better positioned than most people that have other retirement savings."