SMSF residential property allocation nearly doubles over 2013

Zoe FieldingFebruary 24, 20140 min read

Self-managed superannuation funds allocated almost twice as much of their assets to residential property in 2013 compared with the year before, a report into the funds has found.

The fourth annual Intimate with Self-Managed Superannuation report found that 9.9% of SMSF assets were held in residential property last year, up from 5.6% in 2012. The increase came as fund members reduced their cash allocations to 31% of total assets, down from 33.9% of assets held in cash in 2012.

The report, released at the SMSF Professionals’ Association of Australia (SPAA) conference in Brisbane recently, revealed that one third of SMSF trustees plan to consider investing in residential property through their super fund.

More than two thirds of SMSF trustees who invest in property are self-directed in their decision to do so, however many people do seek advice from financial planners or accountants, particularly regarding the loan structures that super funds can use to borrow for investing, known as limited recourse borrowing arrangements.

However the report, which was commissioned by fund manager Russell Investments and SPAA, and produced by research house CoreData, found that fewer financial advisers intend to offer assistance in on limited recourse borrowing arrangements in future.

While almost half of financial advisers surveyed had previously advised SMSF trustees on the rules on borrowing through SMSFs, only 7.7% planned to provide advice in that area in future. Almost 30% of advisers surveyed had never given advice on limited recourse borrowing arrangements.

The report’s findings on property investment were at odds with the latest Australian Taxation Office statistics, which showed that in September 2013, only $18.6 billion or 3.5% of the total $531.5 billion held in SMSF assets were held in residential property.


Zoe Fielding

I am a freelance journalist and editor with more than 15 years experience specialising in personal finance, property, financial services and financial technology. A skilled writer and researcher, I have extensive experience producing high quality content for corporate and media clients. I am used to working to tight deadlines and tailoring the pieces I produce to suit a variety of audiences and formats.
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