New Zealand
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39% Of Kiwi Concerned About Retirement Savings, New Research Shows

New research commissioned by Public Trust in its 150th year shows 39 percent of Kiwi say their biggest concern is having enough money for their own retirement.

“For most New Zealanders, their KiwiSaver investment will be a tool to help fund their retirement,” says David Callanan, Public Trust General Manager Corporate Trustee Services.

“I encourage everyone to check their KiwiSaver investment to ensure that they have the appropriate settings for their situation. This includes making sure your contribution rates are sufficient to help set you up for the lifestyle you’d like to enjoy in your retirement.”

“If you are not sure, contact your KiwiSaver scheme provider for help,” he says.

Also included in the research findings was that 20% of Kiwi feel they don’t have enough wealth to worry about protecting it, and of those, 58% percent admit to having a KiwiSaver account.

Callanan says this is a “surprising insight” as for many New Zealanders, their KiwiSaver account is a significant wealth asset that will grow over time and is “definitely worth protecting”.

Callanan explains: “As KiwiSaver accounts can only be used for retirement or a first home deposit in most instances, many people treat their accounts as ‘set and forget’ for a long period. This means some people may not be reviewing their accounts regularly enough and, as this research shows, some may not view their KiwiSaver investment as an asset.”

He said there are around 3.2 million Kiwi with KiwiSaver accounts, and he encouraged everyone to have a will, which can help protect their wealth.

“For many of us, our KiwiSaver investment will form a key part of our retirement savings, our overall wealth and our legacies. Without a will in place, your special items and assets may not be distributed how you would have liked, and it can be more complicated for family left behind.”

Callanan explains that if a person dies without a will and has an estate (house, vehicle, KiwiSaver investment etc) worth more than $15,000, distributing their assets and possessions will involve a court process that may be more complex and time-consuming at an already difficult time for their family. Currently nearly 50% of Kiwis over 18 have a will in place.

“You don’t need a lot of money and assets to have a will – but anyone over 18 with $15,000 or more in cash, assets or investments needs one. With the average KiwiSaver balance now around $28,000 (and constantly growing), this means far more people should have a will.”

Public Trust’s Corporate Trustee Services team is currently the supervisor of 11 out of 23 KiwiSaver providers, including 4 out of the 6 default KiwiSaver schemes.

About Public Trust

Public Trust, which marks its 150-year anniversary this year (2023), is a Crown entity employing over 400 people across our corporate offices and network of customer centres.

Our purpose is to empower all New Zealanders to build and protect their legacies. We do this through our work as New Zealand’s largest provider of estate planning and management services. We are also one of the country’s largest charitable trust administrators and advisers, helping more than 420 charities to set up trusts and distribute funds back to our communities.

Our investment team manages around $1.2bn of funds, primarily for charities, estate beneficiaries and students (through our Fee Protect service). Public Trust’s Corporate Trustee Services offer some of Australasia’s best-known institutions a full range of trustee services and we supervise a number of KiwiSaver and superannuation scheme providers.

About the research

To better understand and quantify New Zealanders attitudes and actions around intergenerational wealth, Public Trust commissioned a quantitative survey of more than 1,000 Kiwis 18 years and over.

View the research at: Memories over money: Research reveals New Zealanders’ changing attitudes toward legacies - Public Trust

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