SMSFA strongly opposes making super available for housing

From

Andrea Slattery

The SMSF Association remains emphatic in its opposition to superannuation being used to assist first home buyers enter the property market.

Association Managing Director/CEO Andrea Slattery says: “It’s been our long-held position that allowing people to tap into their superannuation to assist them acquire their first home is bad public policy.

“Although it is tempting to view superannuation savings as a tool for fixing policy problems, it is essential that superannuation is maintained to meet its sole policy purpose – to give people security and dignity in retirement. Making superannuation available to housing would be akin to opening Pandora’s box; super would be seen as a cure-all for every social issue.”

Slattery says it’s important to remember that having retirement income the primary objective of superannuation was accepted by the Federal Government in 2016 after being proposed by the Murray Review in 2014.

“Using super to solve housing policy problems jeopardises the success of the superannuation system, which is ranked as the third best in the world by the Melbourne Mercer Global Pension Index.

“The Association recognises the importance and sensitivity of housing affordability, but does not believe the access to superannuation to fund home deposits is the answer to this problem.

“The proposal to allow people to access super to fund housing purchases would only see greater demand for housing stock, driving prices higher, achieving the exact opposite of what proponents of this proposal seek to achieve.

“Instead, the housing affordability debate needs to primarily focus on other factors driving the housing market instead of seeking funding through people’s retirement savings.”

Slattery acknowledges that superannuation has an important role in providing capital for investments that increase living standards through infrastructure and social investments, but not for a proposal that would simply distort housing markets.

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