Boost Your Super – Selling The Family Home

Boosting your super is integral in securing life lasting financial freedom.

The downsizer super contribution option could help turn your family home into an avenue for a more comfortable retirement.


As you get older there are all kinds of reasons for deciding to sell your family home. You might have more space than you need, you might want a sea or tree change, or to move closer to your grandchildren. You might want the freedom to travel, or simply no longer need a home of your own.

Now, if you’re eligible, you could use some of the proceeds of the sale to boost your retirement savings more tax-effectively.


From 1 July 2018 the downsizer super contribution will allow eligible Australians over the age of 65 to direct some of the proceeds from the sale of a long-held home into their super. The maximum amount you can contribute is $300,000 per person, so a couple could contribute up to $600,000.

You don’t need to buy a new home, and, if you do decide to purchase a new property, it doesn’t have to be smaller or cheaper.


  1. A higher super balance. If you’re retired or about to retire and haven’t been able to save as much super as you’d like, you can use the downsizer contribution super strategy to top up your balance.
  2. You could pay less tax. You may be able to take advantage of the concessional tax treatment of the super system. For example, if your contribution remains in the accumulation phase of super, any earnings that accrue on this amount are taxed at up to 15 percent. Or, if you use your contribution to start a super income stream, earnings that accrue on this amount are taxed at 0 percent. If you instead invested the sale proceeds in your own name, you would pay tax on earnings at your marginal rate (plus Medicare levy), which could be higher.

You can also make lump sum withdrawals, which will be tax-free.


You may be able to make a downsizer contribution if:

  • You’re 65 or older at the time you make a downsizer contribution. There’s no upper age limit
  • The amount you’re contributing is from the proceeds of selling your home, or a property you’ve treated as your main residence for tax purposes, where the contract of sale was exchanged on or after 1 July 2018
  • Your home was owned by you or your spouse for at least ten years prior to the sale
  • Your home is in Australia and is not a caravan, houseboat or other mobile home
  • The proceeds (capital gain or loss) from the sale of the home are either exempt or partially exempt from capital gains tax (CGT) under the main residence exemption, or would be entitled to such an exemption if the home was a CGT asset rather than a pre-CGT asset
  • You’ve provided your super fund with the downsizer contribution form either before or at the time of making your downsizer contribution
  • You make your downsizer contribution within 90 days of receiving the proceeds of sale, which is usually the date of settlement
  • You haven’t previously made a downsizer contribution to your super from the sale of another home.

(Source: Australian Taxation Office Downsizing contributions into superannuation)

Downsizer contributions aren’t subject to some of the other restrictions that apply to certain other super contributions.

Downsizer contributions aren’t subject to some of the other restrictions that apply to certain other super contributions.

  • Eligibility will not be based on having a total superannuation balance (TSB) of less than $1.6m like non-concessional contributions.
  • You don’t need to meet a work test (completion of 40 hours work within a 30-day period during the financial year).
  • Downsizer contributions aren’t assessed against your non-concessional (after-tax) contribution cap.


  • While eligibility to make a downsizer contribution is not tested against your total super balance, once you have made a downsizer contribution, it will form part of your TSB. Eligibility to make certain types of super contributions in the future may be limited by this amount.
  • Downsizer contributions are not tax-deductible.
  • Unlike your home which is not assessed by Centrelink while it is your main residence, your super balance is assessed as an asset once you reach your Age Pension age. If you receive any means-tested social security or Department of Veterans’ Affairs income support payments, you should seek advice to understand the impact that selling your home will have on your entitlements.

You can find more information about the downsizer super contribution on the ATO website.

If you want further expert advice on super and retirement, contact us on (02) 9327 4338 or, or click the Obligation-FREE 90 minute consultation link at the bottom of the page.

Mike Sikar

Founder & Principal Advisor

I’ve been a leader and innovator of the financial services industry for almost two decades, as a stockbroker from 1997 – 2007 and as a financial advisor from 2008.

Managing money comes down to basic psychology-understand how it works, know what you want it for and consistently apply the key principles to get the most out of it.



“The best way to measure your investing success is not by whether you’re beating the market but by whether you’ve put in place a financial plan and a behavioral discipline that are likely to get you where you want to go.”

~Benjamin Graham

You may also like

7 Strategies To Reduce Tax and Build Wealth for High-Income Earners

We get it. You are on a high income, the tax you pay is just as high, and you are looking for ways to reduce your tax. This article will discuss strategies to reduce taxes and build wealth simultaneously.  These strategies are designed for people like you, high-income professionals and executives, and they can save […]

Read More
20 rules to improving your personal finance

20 Personal Finance Rules to live by

When it comes to personal finance, I often reflect on what are the best pieces of money advice I have learnt over the past couple of decades. Here are some of my greatest hits!

Read More

Top Super Strategies to Manage End of Financial Year Tax Stress

5 simple ways you can add to your super and reduce the amount of tax you have to pay at the end of the financial year.

Read More

4 Tips To Better Manage Your Employee Share Scheme

Employee share schemes can be an excellent way to be remunerated. They are seen as highly motivational and can incentivise performance. However, when talking to professionals involved in employee share schemes, people often seem to complain about significant stress. This is most commonly due to the uncertainties around tax and the decisions required to manage […]

Read More

Step by Step Guide to Debt Recycling & Building Passive Income

Discover how to turn non tax deductable debt into tax deductable debt and leverage the power of your tax to grow your wealth tax effectively.

Read More

When can I afford to retire? How long will my money last?

When can I afford to retire? How long will my money last? When consulting with my clients, many of them say they would like to reduce their working hours and pursue their personal interests sooner rather than later. Because they don’t want to rely solely on their full-time employment income. Therefore they must generate enough […]

Read More

Let us contact you

Complete the form and we will schedule a chat at the most convenient time for you.