How to set up your SMSF in 7 easy steps

How to set up your SMSF in 7 easy steps

Starting your own SMSF is major financial decision, but if you’ve done your research and agreed it is right for you, here are the seven steps you need to take to get started.

  1. Decide whether you’d like to add other members to the fund (you can add up to three more).
  2. Decide on who you’d like the trustee to be – individual or corporate. Read our post on the differences here.
  3. If you decide a corporate trustee is right for you, set up the company with ASIC.
  4. Set up the SMSF using a trust deed. You can approach either a solicitor or an accountant for help with your SMSF’s trust deed, and you’ll need all your personal details handy (dates and places of birth, tax file numbers for the members, etc). Once everything is prepared sign all the paperwork.
  5.  Apply to the ATO for an Australian Business Number (ABN) and a Tax File Number (TFN).
  6. Open a bank account in the trustee of the SMSF’s name, and any other accounts that you need (e.g. a stockbroking account).
  7. Prepare an investment strategy.

Now you’re ready to go! Once the ABN and TFN are issued by the ATO, you’ll be able to contribute to your fund (directly or via an employer) and you can also apply to have any existing super transferred from another fund.

Of course, there are annual requirements of running your SMSF, and this is where an SMSF administrator or accountant can help you.

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