If you’re aged 65 or over and are selling your home, you may be eligible to contribute up to $300,000 (or $600,000 for couples) from the proceeds of the sale to your super account.

What are downsizer contributions?

Downsizer contributions are a way for people aged 65 or over to boost their super. If you sell your home, you can use the sale proceeds to make a downsizer contribution to your super. Your spouse can do this as well (whether they had joint ownership of the home or not), meaning there’s potential for up to $600,000 to be contributed to your retirement savings.

Downsizer contributions provide an opportunity for people who might otherwise be ineligible to contribute to super, including:

  • those over 65 who have reached their contributions cap
  • those over 67 who don’t meet the work test or work test exemption
  • those over 75 who are usually  (due to their age) restricted from making contributions to super.

Find out more

How does it work?

After selling your home, you’ll have 90 days from the date you receive the proceeds (usually the date of settlement) to make a downsizer contribution to your super. You can make your contribution in instalments, as long as the total:

  • is funded only from the sale of your home
  • doesn’t exceed $300,000 per person1
  • is contributed within the 90-day timeframe.

The amount won’t count towards your concessional or non-concessional contributions cap,2 so it’s a great way to give your super an extra boost. And despite its name, there is no requirement to purchase another home.

Before taking advantage of this type of contribution, it's best to check you’re eligible.

1 A maximum of $300,000 per person in a couple can be used as a downsizer contribution. Each member of a couple can reach that maximum, but the contributions must be made to their individual super accounts (not $600,000 to one spouse’s account).
2 Annual contribution limits apply to both before-tax (concessional) and after-tax (non-concessional) contributions made to your super. For full details, please see our fact sheet Opportunities and limits for super contributions

Am I eligible?

You will be eligible for the downsizer contribution if you meet all of the following criteria:

  • you’re at least 65 years old
  • you or your spouse owned your Australian home3 for at least 10 years
  • this is your first (and only) time making a downsizer contribution to your super.

3 For the purpose of downsizer contributions, ‘home’ does not include a caravan, houseboat or other mobile home.

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Example 1

Peta (age 68) and Kay (age 75) decide to sell their home after 30 years of ownership. The house was wholly owned by Peta alone. It sells for $950,000, and Peta and Kay agree to make a $300,000 downsizer contribution to each of their super accounts. They have 90 days from the date of receiving the proceeds of sale to do this.

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Example 2

Guia (age 67) and Michael (age 64) sell their home for $500,000 after 12 years of ownership. Michael is not eligible for the downsizer contribution yet, as he is under age 65.

Guia contributes $100,000 of the sale proceeds to her super. She can still contribute a further $200,000, but must do so within 90 days from the settlement date.

Things to consider

If you’re thinking about making a downsizer contribution, there are some important factors to consider.

Downsizer contributions:

  • are not tax-deductible
  • will be taken into account in working out your eligibility for the government age pension, potentially resulting in your ineligibility
  • will not affect your total super balance4 until it is re-calculated to include all your contributions on 30 June at the end of the financial year.

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4 Your total super balance is generally the total value of your super interests in both accumulation phase and retirement phase at the end of the previous financial year, noting that:

  • for accumulation phase, this is generally the withdrawal value at 30 June
  • for the retirement phase, this is the balance of your personal transfer balance cap which is managed by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

You can view your total super balance through your ATO linked account by logging into your mygov account.

How do I make a downsizer contribution?

To make a downsizer contribution to your NGS Accumulation account:

  1. Make sure you’re eligible by checking above and ensuring you understand the rules explained on this page.
  2. Complete the Downsizer contribution form available at the ATO website.
  3. Send your completed form to us, along with a completed Lump sum contribution form.

Remember, downsizer contributions must be made within 90 days of receiving the sale proceeds (usually the date of settlement).

ATO website

Download contribution form

Need help?

Selling your home is a big decision that has implications not only for your finances but your lifestyle and, potentially, your family. If you’d like to talk it through, consider speaking with a financial planner.

Advice services

As a member of NGS, you have access to our dedicated advice services. Our expert advice team can help you make sense of your finances, and guide you to achieving the goals you have, whether big or small.

Super retirement

Superannuation and retirement go hand in hand — there are options within super you should consider to ensure you can create the retirement you've worked hard for.

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