If one of your goals this year is to get your finances sorted, make sure you’re including KiwiSaver. If you haven’t looked at yours for a while, or you don’t know what fund you’re in, now’s a great time to do a bit of a review and see how you can get your balance back on track this year. Here are some questions to help you get started.
Are you in a fund that best suits your needs?
If you were automatically enrolled in KiwiSaver through your employer and never actively chose which fund to be in, it’s likely you’re in a default scheme which is more conservative and might not grow as much as you’d like come retirement.
It’s important that the KiwiSaver fund you’re in is meeting your needs, namely your appetite for risk and the length of time until you need to withdraw it. If you aren’t sure which fund you’re in, it’s a good idea to take a look.
Check in and make sure you know your options and have made a conscious decision about how you want your KiwiSaver to work for you.
Can you increase your contributions?
If you’re enrolled in KiwiSaver, you’ll be contributing 3%, 4%, 6%, 8%, or 10% from your salary. If you began at the lower end of the scale but have since received a pay rise, you could look at contributing more to boost your KiwiSaver. Even increasing a 3% contribution to 4% might make a healthy difference to your balance over the long run.
Remember, you can also make voluntary lump sum payments into your KiwiSaver to increase your balance. If you’ve had a one-off bonus, or come into some cash from an inheritance or similar, you can allocate a bit more to put towards your KiwiSaver balance.
What fees are you paying?
Because KiwiSaver is an investment, KiwiSaver providers charge different fees for managing your account. If you’re getting great returns you might be happy to pay more in fees, but it’s a good idea to check out what fees you’re paying because there may be a better option out there for you.
If you’re not sure what fees you’re paying, Sorted has a great tool called Fund Finder to help you compare. You will need to know who your KiwiSaver provider is, and what fund type you are in. If you’re not sure about those details, you can find out by calling 0800 KIWISAVER.