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New Year Tip—Check Your Kiwisaver Balance

31 December 2013

New Year Tip—Check Your Kiwisaver Balance and Get Ready to Be Surprised

2013 New Year financial tip for young KiwiSavers: Check your account balance and get ready for a pleasant surprise, suggests Financial Service Council chief executive Peter Neilson.

“We’re hearing stories about young people in their early to mid-20s becoming advocates for KiwiSaver, after they’ve discovered their account balances are now running into the thousands or tens of thousands of dollars, without ever missing the money they have been saving,” Mr Neilson said.

“In April KiwiSaver will celebrate its fifth birthday and some tidy sums are being saved, which are turning previously disinterested young people into KiwiSaver advocates.

“A typical story comes from a Wellington mum who deliberately didn’t tell her son he could opt out of KiwiSaver at the start of his apprenticeship. Now, five years later and aged 23 years, the young man is a qualified builder with more than $15,000 in his KiwiSaver account,” Mr Neilson said.

“Mother and son are in absolute agreement that it would never have happened if the savings scheme had relied on his self-discipline and he’d known he could opt out of KiwiSaver.”

Mr Neilson gave another example of a young journalist doing a KiwiSaver story that triggered her to check her own KiwiSaver balance and got the same sort of pleasant surprise.

“She told me she’d never had the money, so she’d never missed it and that now she is telling her friends if they’re not in KiwiSaver they should be,” Mr Neilson said. “More and more of these stories will start to circulate among young people and help non KiwiSavers to think about joining.

“It’s never too late to start, but the big secret to success is compounding interest for young people who start early, which will balloon their retirement savings,” Mr Neilson said.

About the Financial Services Council

The Financial Services Council has 22 member companies and 17 associate members. Members are managing nearly $80 billion in savings and provide financial services to more than 2 million New Zealand investors and policyholders. If you have a life insurance policy or a KiwiSaver account then there is a more than 80 percent chance it is managed by a Financial Services Council member.

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