Tip #1. Start planning for your retirement well before the intended retirement date. Seeking advice 5 - 10 years in advance is often ideal and start by setting some realistic goals. A second opinion should always be considered.
Tip #2. Think very carefully before deciding how much to contribute to the PSS Scheme and make sacrifices if necessary to optimise your contributions. If you make the wrong decision with contributions it could cost you a comfortable retirement.
Tip#3. Always consider salary sacrifice to super as part of a long term retirement strategy and explore options to turn your personal super into a pension from age 60.(The pension paid is tax free and salary sacrifice can perhaps be increased even further!).
Tip#4. At retirement, always consider the pension option in the first instance and then only be guided to consider other lump sum alternatives if your circumstances require it.
Tip#5. If you are receiving a redundancy and you are thinking about preserving your benefit, make sure you fully understand the long term implications of this option as the employer benefit is only indexed to the CPI and over time it can prove a costly exercise unless you are planning a return to the Public Service in the future.
Tip#6. When you are planning for retirement always aim to leave after a birthday if practical and do not assume that you cannot plan to retire at age 55 and take the pension even though your preservation age might be higher.
Tip#7. When you are ready to claim your PSS benefit, tread very carefully with Financial Advisers who focus on the lump sum and recommend in-house superannuation and pension account options as they may cost you very dearly in the long term.
Tip#8. Don't assume that Industry super funds are the most cost effective investment option for you for your current and future needs. Industry pension fund costs are not always the same as the Industry super fund costs and Industry fund costs in general can vary significantly between providers.
Tip#9. PSS members should always consider additional and comprehensive insurance cover in addition to any PSS entitlements.
Tip#10. Don't assume that your PSS employer contributions count as the full 9.5% of your salary toward your relevant superannuation concessional contribution cap. Also, don't assume that your 2% - 10% personal contributions to the PSS count towards the concessional cap.
Tip#11. When salary sacrificing to super, always consider whether it is more tax effective for your spouse to salary sacrifice than you. Also consider splitting contributions with your spouse if appropriate.
Tip#12. Think carefully before transferring lump sum superannuation monies to the PSS. Post 1995, any transfers to the PSS Scheme will not grow the defined benefit, cannot be converted to a pension and are subject to the PSS Scheme rules for future access.
Tip#13. Under the Age Retirement Option, your salary for superannuation purposes used to determine your final benefit is based on an average of your salary on your last three birthdays and not your last day of service. The rules for the PSSdb are different to the CSS.
Tip#14. Don't underestimate the benefit of performing Higher Duties for a continuous period of 1 year and one day or longer. It may allow a higher salary for superannuation purposes to be permanently locked in, indexed in the future and then used in your final retirement benefit calculation.
Tip#15. The PSS 10 year rule is often not well misunderstood and in some circumstances can be optimised by contributing at 10% earlier in your career while your salary is lower and then at 5% later in your career when your salary is higher.
Tip#16 Always check your final retirement benefit calculation to ensure the superannuation salary recorded is correct. PSS rely on information from Payroll Departments and errors can be made.
Tip#17. Don't let work colleagues be your primary source of Financial Advice. In the long run, this often proves to be a poor choice through misunderstandings and missed opportunities.
Tip#18. In retirement, deductible superannuation contributions may assist with tax planning for PSS pension recipients in some circumstances.
Tip#19. Don't be naive in assuming the new Transfer Balance Caps and Transfer Balance Credits will not apply to you in retirement. PSS Defined Benefit Pensions are highly valued for the purpose of Transfer Balance Caps and Transfer Balance Credits, and this can be a real problem for retirees from senior positions or with long periods of Public Service.
PSS Superannuation Financial Advice PSS Retirement Financial Advice PSS Redundancy Financial Advice are all types of PSS Financial Planning Advice.
PSS Financial Planning Advice is important for PSS Members to ensure they maximise their PSS Retirement Benefits.
When it comes to PSS Financial Advice, the tips below may assist you to improve your final PSS benefit if you seek PSS Financial Advice at appropriate times from appropriately qualified PSS Financial Advisers.