Can I Withdraw My Super to Buy a House?

May 10, 2024
Can I Withdraw My Super to Buy a House?

Key takeaways:

  • Withdrawing super for a home requires meeting conditions like retirement or age 65.
  • SMSF can invest in property but must adhere to strict compliance rules.
  • The First Home Super Saver Scheme allows saving for a home with tax benefits.

Can I withdraw my super to buy a house? This is a question many Australians are asking as they continue to give up portions of their monthly salary to their superannuation.

Buying a house with your super is possible, but there are some crucial details you need to understand first.

The rules aren’t the same for everyone or every situation.

Essentially, there are two different scenarios when considering using your super to buy property:

  1. Buying a home to live in
  2. Buying a property as an investment or even a holiday home

The possibilities—and the restrictions—vary significantly between these two options.

This article breaks down what you need to know about each scenario, helping you navigate the specifics of using your super for property investment, particularly through Self-Managed Super Funds (SMSFs).

Can I Buy a House With My Superannuation to Live In?

Yes, but with restrictions. While you cannot directly live in a house purchased using your superannuation funds while it remains within the super fund, there are ways around this.

One approach is to withdraw your super balance upon meeting a condition of release—like retirement or reaching age 65—and use these funds to buy a home.

Alternatively, you could buy a house as part of your superannuation strategy and then transfer it into your name upon retirement, planning to live in it then.

For more on navigating the rules about how to ultimately live in your SMSF property, our detailed guide could provide clarity.

Conditions of Release:

  • Retirement, defined as stopping work after reaching your preservation age with no plans to return to work.
  • Reaching age between 55-65 (depending on when you were born), which allows you full access to your super.

You can read more about this process in our article on how you can use your super to buy a house.

Can I Buy a House With My Superannuation for Investment?

Investing in property through your super is indeed possible and often done through a Self-Managed Superannuation Fund (SMSF).

This allows more control over your investment choices, including property. Explore broader investment opportunities in the real estate market through our page on buying real estate.

However, if you use your super to buy property, it must comply with several rules:

  • The property cannot be used by the fund members or their relatives while it remains within the SMSF.
  • It must meet the sole purpose test of providing retirement benefits to fund members.

Setting up an SMSF involves significant responsibility and costs, and you must ensure that your SMSF property investments are approved by both the trust deed and investment strategy.

Additionally, property owned by an SMSF cannot be used for personal purposes, with the exception of business real property, which can be leased back to a member’s business under strict conditions.

For further details on the process and regulations, check out our article on transferring property out of an SMSF.

Using Your Super for a House Deposit: First Home Super Saver Scheme (FHSSS)

can i withdraw my super to buy a house

The FHSSS is a great tool for first-time buyers. It allows you to save money for your first home inside your super fund, which can be faster due to the concessional tax treatment.

You can withdraw these contributions (plus associated earnings) to fund your home purchase.

Remember, while you can save via this scheme, the actual purchase of your home cannot occur directly through your super fund unless you’ve met a condition of release.

Conditions for Using FHSSS:

  • You can contribute up to $15,000 per year and a total of $50,000 across all years to your super for this scheme.
  • Upon purchasing a house, you can apply to withdraw these funds.

For detailed guidance on the FHSSS, check out this explanation on using your super for a house deposit.

Conclusion: Can I Withdraw My Super to Buy a House?

Whether you’re looking to buy your first home or invest in property using your super, it’s essential to understand the various regulations and conditions.

While using super for property can be a smart strategy, it requires careful planning and adherence to legal guidelines.

Before deciding to invest your super in real estate, it’s important to assess if this aligns with your long-term financial goals. You can gain insights on whether this investment is suitable for you by reading is it worth buying a property with your super.

Disclaimer: This article is meant for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Always seek professional advice to ensure that your investment decisions align with your retirement goals and comply with superannuation laws.

FAQs on ‘Can I Withdraw My Super to Buy a House?’

Can I withdraw $500,000 from my super fund as a lump sum?

Yes, depending on your super fund’s rules, you may be able to withdraw your superannuation as a lump sum. This can be taken all at once or in several lump sum payments. You can use a lump sum for various purposes, such as paying off your mortgage.

Under what circumstances can you withdraw superannuation?

You can withdraw your super when you turn 65 (even if you haven’t retired), reach preservation age and retire, or start a transition to retirement income stream while continuing to work. You may also satisfy an early access requirement.

Can I take my super out at 60 and keep working?

Yes, if you end an employment arrangement on or after age 60, you can access the super earned up to that point. If you are not ready to retire, you might consider using some of your super with a Transition to Retirement Income account while still working.

Can I withdraw my super if I leave Australia permanently?

Yes, if you are not an Australian or New Zealand citizen, or a permanent resident and were on a temporary visa (excluding Subclass 405 or 410), you can have your superannuation paid out after leaving Australia.

Soho is your expert team in Australian real estate, offering an innovative platform for effortless property searches. With deep insights into buying, renting, and market trends, we guide you to make informed decisions, whether it's your first home or exploring new suburbs.
Share this article
Don’t waste time searching for a home. Let our AI do the work


Soho logo

Our AI match engine will match you with over 150,000+ properties and you can swipe away or shortlist easily. Making your home buying journey faster and easier 

Soho logo
Our AI match engine will match you with over 150,000+ properties and you can swipe away or shortlist easily. Making your home buying journey faster and easier.