Average KiwiSaver Balance by Age

KiwiSaver is designed to provide Kiwis with a source of income during retirement. It helps supplement any income from the Government once you stop working. But are you on track to have enough tucked away for retirement? Canstar explores the average KiwiSaver balance by age.

Average KiwiSaver balance by age

The table below explores the average KiwiSaver balance by age*

17 & Under 18 – 25 26 – 30 31 – 35 36 – 40 41- 45 46 – 50 51 – 55 56 – 60  61 – 65 
Female $2423 $7088 $13,950 $16,985 $21,703 $27,269 $33,189 $37,414 $41,074 $45,017
Male $2463 $8694 $16,963 $21,535 $27,950 $36,114 $45,036 $51,428 $55,995 $60,067
Average $2449 $7589 $15,046 $18,554 $23,825 $30,527 $37,716 $42,866 $47,016 $51,054

Sourse: Data from Te Ara Ahunga Ora Retirement Commission

Calculating how much KiwiSaver you should have, by age, is tricky, as there’s no one definitive answer.

However, if you’re a 30-year-old with a set balance, you’re obviously in a far better position to save for a comfortable retirement than somebody who is 50 years old with the same sum.

The key is to start saving early, to save as much as possible and to be proactive about checking your KiwiSaver fund’s progress.

KiwiSaver gender gap

By looking at the table above, it is obvious that there’s a significant difference between the average KiwiSaver balance of men and women in the same age group. Here are some reasons why:

  • Gender pay gap: women are generally found to be paid less than men
  • Time out of paid work: many women take a break from working to give birth and take care of their family, meaning they might not contribute to their KiwiSaver at this time
  • Part-time work: a higher percentage of women work part-time than men

How much do I need in my KiwiSaver to retire?

Below are Massey University‘s most recent estimations of how much KiwiSaver you’ll need to live, in addition to your government super.  The results are based on the assumptions:

  • You have no other source of income besides superannuation
  • You have no other form of savings besides your KiwiSaver balance
  • Your KiwiSaver balance, once you retire, continues to grow at the same rate as inflation


Retirement length Main centres: No frills Main centres: Choices Regions: No frills Regions: Choices
10 years $188,926 $364,078 $117,832 $416,213
20 years $377,853 $728,156 $235,664 $832,426
30 years $566,779 $1,092,234 $353,496 $1,248,640
Male to 80 $283,390 $546,117 $176,748 $624,320
Female to 83.5 $349,514 $673,544 $217,989 $769,994


Retirement length Main centres: No frills Main centres: Choices Regions: No frills Regions: Choices
10 years $140,296 $495,888 $71,552 $321,402
20 years $280,592 $991,775 $143,104 $642,803
30 years $420,888 $1,487,663 $214,656 $964,205

Life expectancy based on 2017-2019 data. Life expectancy figures calculated accounting for retirement at 65. All figures are an estimation, rounded to the nearest dollar, and should be used as a guide only.

It’s important to note that these figures estimate how much you would need to retire today. Accounting for inflation, the actual figures at time of retirement will differ, but should be equivalent to the current value of the above figures.

By comparing the average KiwiSaver balance to retirement requirements, it appears most Kiwis aren’t on track to afford a long retirement, or one with more than a basic lifestlye.

And while it’s expected that those who haven’t worked for long won’t have a high KiwiSaver balance, there are some who are closer retirement that are lagging behind. Those who are over the age of 35 generally have higher balances than younger cohorts, a quarter of them still have balances under $10,000.

In fact, one in five of those aged 51-65 have less than $10,000 and they may not have saved as much as they would have liked for their retirement.

Ultimately, if you’re concerned about having enough money for your retirement, you should start doing something about it now. And one of the easiest and quickest things you can do is to compare your current KiwiSaver provider against others in the market.

Do you know what returns you’ve earned over the past year, and the fees you’ve paid? If you are in the wrong fund, you could be missing out on better returns on your investments.

Here at Canstar, we can help you find the right KiwiSaver fund for your needs. While it can be hard to predict the future, looking to the past can help you make informed choices. With our helpful comparison tool, you can see the past one-year, three-year, five-year, and even seven-year returns of all the available funds, alongside other information such as annual fees, termination fees, added features, and the Canstar star rating. To learn more or to start comparing click the button below:

Compare KiwiSaver funds

About the author of this page

This report was written by Canstar Content Producer, Caitlin Bingham. Caitlin is an experienced writer whose passion for creativity led her to study communication and journalism. She began her career freelancing as a content writer, before joining the Canstar team.

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