Compare ETF cost between SuperLife and SmartShares

In case you don’t know, I am in the camp of passive low-cost investing. So most of my investment are in ETF and index fund.

Currently, the easiest way to buy and hold ETF in New Zealand is with SmartShares and SuperLife. Both companies are owned by NZX and they are selling basically the same ETF product. However, the cost of the ETF are different with those 2 companies and I’ve put together a table to compare it.

In general, Superlife offers lower fund management fee. However, they do charge a $12/year admin fee which makes Superlife more expensive when you are starting out. So you should start with Smartshare and once your hold reaches the “When to Switch” amount, you can move your fund to Superlife to enjoy the lower cost and the better user interface.

My table is based on you have only 1 fund in SuperLife. If you have multiple funds with SuperLife, that $12 Admin fee will be shared by those funds and you can divide the “Switch to SuperLife” amount by the numbers of funds you’ve got.

Here is an example:

You are holding $15000 Global Bond ETF and $12000 Aust Property ETF with Smartshare. Both of them alone did not pass the “When to switch” limit. However, if you switch both of them to Superlife, the “When to switch” will be divided by the numbers of funds, which is 2, and the new “when to switch” amount will be $24000/2 = $12000. So you should switch both of them over to save fees.