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A beginner’s guide to the Retirement Sum Topping-Up Scheme (RSTU)

08 Apr 2019 
SOURCE: CPF Board

Setting aside a large sum of money for retirement can seem like a challenging task. It doesn’t have to be as daunting as many think, however, if one astutely harnesses the power of compound interest, which Albert Einstein once quipped as the “eighth wonder of the world”—with good reason.


For example, with interest rates of up to 6% per year1, it’s possible to accumulate savings in your CPF accounts substantially by saving just a small amount on a regular basis.

Under the Retirement Sum Topping-Up Scheme (RSTU), you can top up your Special Account (SA) if you are below age 55, or Retirement Account (RA) if you are aged 55 and above, via CPF transfer or cash. If you wish to support your loved ones’ retirement saving goals, you can also top up their SA or RA savings for them.

Whether you are planning to build your own retirement nest egg or help your loved ones grow their retirement funds, here’s a guide on RSTU to help you get started on boosting your funds with compound interest!  

What are the types of top-ups I can make and the benefits of topping up? 
CPF transfers
Savings in your Ordinary Account (OA) earn base interest of 2.5%, while SA or RA savings earn  base interest of 4%. If you are below age 55, you can transfer your OA savings to your SA to earn higher interest. If you are aged 55 and above, you can set aside more savings for your needs in retirement by transferring your SA or OA savings to your RA2. CPF transfers can also be made to your spouse, parents, parents-in-law, grandparents, grandparents-in-law and siblings.

Cash top-ups
Cash top-ups can be made to yourself or any other recipient’s CPF accounts. You can enjoy dollar-for-dollar tax relief of up to $7,000 per calendar year if you top up your SA or RA with cash, and an additional $7,000 per calendar year if you make cash top-ups for your parents, parents-in-law, grandparents, grandparents-in-law, spouse and siblings3.

What is the maximum amount of CPF transfer or cash top-up I or my loved ones can receive?
If you are below age 55, you can top up your SA up to the current Full Retirement Sum (FRS). For those aged 55 and above, you can top up your RA up to the current Enhanced Retirement Sum (ERS). Similarly, your loved ones can receive top-ups up to the FRS in their SA if they are below age 55, and up to ERS in their RA if they are aged 55 and above. Here are examples for each age group:​

A beginners guide to the Retirement Sum ToppingUp Scheme1.jpg ​💡 Tip: The recipient can do a quick check on how much he/she can receive through my cpf Online Services > My Messages (refer to section under RSTU).  


How much CPF savings can I transfer to my loved ones? 
If you wish to transfer your savings to your spouse, parents or grandparents, your CPF balances will only need to exceed the Basic Retirement Sum (BRS)—which is half the Full Retirement Sum (FRS)4. For transfers to parents or grandparents, this is provided you have enough savings inclusive of CPF property charge/pledge to meet at least the current FRS (if you are below 55 years old), or the FRS applicable to you (if you are 55 years old and above).

To understand this better, you can refer to these examples in the computation of amounts for transfers to parents and grandparents.

For information on CPF transfers under RSTU to your siblings, parents-in-law, grandparents-in-law or parents/grandparents if you do not have a CPF property charge/pledge, you can refer here.  

Alternatively, you can check how much CPF savings you can transfer to your loved ones through my cpf Online Services > My Messages (refer to section under RSTU).

How can I make a CPF transfer or cash top-up?
You can now make a CPF transfer or cash top-up easily on the go with the myCPF mobile app (available for Android or iOS): ​A beginners guide to the Retirement Sum ToppingUp Scheme2.jpg  

You can also make a CPF transfer via my cpf Online Services and top up with cash via the following methods:

  • PayNow QR
  • OCBC Personal Internet Banking
  • e-Cashier (CPF website)
  • AXS machines
  • GIRO
  • Cheque
To learn more, read the step-by-step guide on how you can make a CPF transfer or cash top-up.

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Should you still have further questions about topping up your CPF savings, learn more about the Retirement Sum Topping-Up Scheme here.

1 Inclusive of an extra 1% interest paid on the first $60,000 of a member’s combined balances, of which up to $20,000 comes from the Ordinary Account (OA). Members aged 55 and above will also receive an additional 1% extra interest on the first $30,000 of their combined balances, with up to $20,000 from the OA.

2 For members aged 55 and above, SA savings will be transferred first before OA savings.

3 Applicable only for cash top-ups up to the current Full Retirement Sum (FRS). Cash top-ups beyond the current FRS will not be eligible for tax relief. To qualify for tax relief for cash top-ups made to your spouse or siblings, they must not have an annual income of more than $4,000 in the year preceding the year of top-up (e.g. salary or tax-exempt income such as bank interest, dividends, and pension) or be handicapped. Overall personal income tax relief cap of $80,000 applies for cash top-ups to CPF accounts. For other terms and conditions on tax relief, please refer to the section on the benefits of topping up here.

4Since October 2018, members can transfer CPF savings in excess of the BRS (instead of the FRS) to their parents and grandparents, if the member has enough CPF property charge/pledge to meet at least the current FRS (if he/she is below 55 years old), or the FRS applicable to him/her (if he/she is 55 years old and above). This relaxation of top-up rules gives members who are providing for their parents and grandparents more options to strengthen their parents’ and grandparents’ retirement adequacy.​


 

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