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Converting your super into steady income when you retire is easy with an account-based pension. This is a retirement account for your super.  
There’s lots of choice and flexibility and great tax benefits. Pay yourself a regular income from your account and make extra cash withdrawals whenever you need to.

Key points:

  • Turn the super you’ve saved into a regular income in retirement with an account-based pension.
  • With this account, you get to choose how much and when you get paid each year.
  • Income payments are 100% tax-free if you’re 60 or over.
  • All investment earnings are 100% tax-free.
  • Change how much and when you get paid an income as many times as you like.
  • You’re not locked into the decisions you make when you set up your account. 

Turn your super into regular tax-free income with an account-based pension

To start withdrawing regular income from your super, simply open an account-based pension and transfer some, or all, of your money from your super account. 

Once the account is set up, you can choose how much your income payments will be, and when you’ll be paid, to suit your needs. And you can make changes to your payments at any time.

It doesn’t matter how big or small your super balance is. An account-based pension keeps your savings invested in the market. This can boost your retirement income.

Who is this account suitable for?

You can start an account-based pension if you:

  • Are 65 or over – even if you’re still working 
  • Reach your preservation age and retire, or
  • Are 60 or over and have changed employers or temporarily stopped working.

Benefits of an account-based pension

  • All income payments are 100% tax-free if you’re 60 or over.
  • Investment earnings are 100% tax free1.
  • It replaces the income you were getting from a salary while you were working.
  • You decide how much and how often you receive income payments.
  • You choose how your money stays invested and continue to earn investment returns.

1 From age 60 and over, generally no tax is payable on withdrawals from your super in retirement. Under age 60, tax may apply on withdrawals.

Around 40% of the retirement income from super could come from investment earnings. So it pays to keep your savings invested. You have the choice to change your mind at any time and withdraw your money or transfer it back into super.

Set up a regular income with an account-based pension

Follow these steps to set up your retirement account.

1. Consolidate any super accounts you have.

You can’t open an account-based pension (retirement account) directly. You’ll need to transfer money from a super accumulation account first.

All it takes is about two minutes to combine any super you have into your Aware Super accountCombine your super now.

2. Decide how much you need in retirement.

We’ve made working this out easy for you with our simple target income tool.   

Once you know how much income you’ll need when you retire, you‘ll need to deduct any Government Age Pension you may be eligible for.

The difference will give you the amount of super you’ll need as income payments each year. 


3. Open your account-based pension account.

To open a retirement account with us, you need to fill out the Start a retirement income stream application (PDF, 591kb) and send it to us. You’ll need to give us information including:

  • your personal details,
  • how much you want to transfer from you super,
  • how much you want to withdraw as regular income,
  • what you want to invest in and
  • who you want to nominate as a beneficiary

This video takes you through how to fill in the application form, step by step.

4. Move your money from your super account into the account-based pension.
It’s easy. Just complete sections 5 & 6 of the Retirement income stream application (PDF PDF, 591kb). We’ll then know what amount of super to transfer into your retirement account.
5. Choose how often you pay yourself a regular income and how much it will be.
You do this through section 9 of the Retirement income stream application (PDF PDF, 591kb). And if you already have an account open with us, you can change your payment amounts and frequency at any time. Change your income payments.

You can move money into your account-based pension from other sources, such as personal savings, it needs to go into your super account first.

Ready to open an account-based pension?

An account-based pension at Aware Super is called a retirement income stream account.
If you open an account with us, you’re not locked in. There’s plenty of flexibility.

You can change your mind at any time and make extra withdrawals, just like you would form a bank account.  

Complete the application (PDF, 591kb)

Things to consider

  • There are no maximum income payment limits. But the Government does set an annual minimum percentage that you must withdraw each year. This minimum withdrawal amount is based on your age. 
  • You can’t contribute extra money into an account-based pension once it is opened
  • you can open another retirement account with us and have multiple accounts, or
  • you can transfer all your money from your retirement account back into a super account to combine your savings,
  • then, you can then start a new retirement account. 
  • From the age of 60 all income payments and cash withdrawals are 100% tax free.
  • Before the age of 60, income payments and cash withdrawals can be taxed.
  • You can open an Aware Super retirement income stream with a minimum of $20,000.
  • You can only transfer money up to a set limit into an account-based pension. For most people, this amount is $1.7 million for tax-free investment returns. Your set limit will depend on your personal transfer balance caps. 

Where to next?

Find out more about the Government Age Pension

You may be eligible for the Government Age Pension when you to retire to help fund your life in retirement.

Attend a webinar or seminar 

Join our experts as they break down super and finances into easy-to-understand topics through our live webinar education series. 

Speak to a financial planner

A financial planner can work through complex financial matters and help you create the right strategies to achieve your financial goals in retirement. They’ll explain any next steps, fees and charges before progressing.