Generally, the ASFA retirement standards show a core set of basic needs (housing, food and communications) that change little with age, and then expenses that increase (health and household services) and decrease (transport and leisure) with age, that nearly balance themselves out.

For the December Quarter, the budgets for modest lifestyles (better than a Government pension but fairly simple living) differed little between 70 year olds and 90 year olds. The annual guidelines for older retirees were $22,685 for a single (3.3% less) and $33,744 for a couple (0.1% less).

For the more comfortable lifestyle figures, the impact of decreased participation in travel and leisure was more significant. The estimates for 90 year olds were $37,944 for a single (10.9% less) and $53,194 for a couple (9.2% less).

It is important to note that these overall benchmarked costs of retirement exceed the full Age Pension, regardless of age or standard of living. 

So how much do you need?

If you take the relevant annual figure and multiply it by the number of years* you expect to be in retirement, you will get a rough idea of how much super you need to have when you retire.

The full break down of these estimates is available on the ASFA website, along with a simple calculator to show how much you may need according to your marital status and which state you live in.

What does this mean for you?

It may mean you need more super than you thought – this could be a good reason to contact our Member Advice Consultants for personalised advice about how to maximise your savings.


*You can use the Australian Bureau of Statistics life tables for an idea of your life expectancy.

Phone 1300 128 751 (Local call)