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Consider the costs, time and skills

As a trustee you need to have time and skills to set up an SMSF.

Last updated 30 June 2021

You need to have the time and skills to manage your Self managed super fund, and there are ongoing running costs.

As a trustee of an SMSF you'll be responsible for operating your fund within the law. If you don't, you may face severe penalties and your fund may suffer tax consequences.

You'll also need to make investment decisions for the SMSF that are in the best financial interests of all members. You will need to formulate and give effect to an investment strategy that you review and update regularly, while understanding and complying with the restrictions on the investments an SMSF can make.

It costs money to set up and run an SMSF. You might find that the fees you pay for an SMSF are more than you would pay in another type of super fund. Every year that you have an SMSF, you'll need to pay for an independent audit and the supervisory levy. Most SMSFs also pay for additional help, such as:

  • preparing the SMSF annual return
  • valuations of the SMSF's assets
  • actuarial certificates for SMSFs paying income streams (pensions)
  • financial advice
  • legal fees, for example if the trust deed needs to be amended
  • assistance with fund administration
  • insurance for members.



Duration 3:06. A transcript of SMSF – You can't do it all yourself is also available.