The number of self-managed super funds (SMSF) using a financial planner or adviser fell for the eighth consecutive year, according to a report by Vanguard and Investment Trends.
The report, based on a survey of almost 4,000 SMSF trustees and 501 financial advisers found only 36 percen of SMSF trustees used a planner or adviser in the past year.
They also felt they lacked confidence in adviser know-how and could manage their own finances.
But the report also noted the number of SMSF trustees seeking advice did not necessarily reflect their need for advice, with 39 per cent of SMSFs saying they had unmet advice needs in areas like pension strategies, building an income stream, and wealth preservation.
Vanguard head of distribution, Michael Lovett, said an opportunity undoubtedly exists for planners and advisers.
"It is incumbent on planners and advisers to demonstrate value above and beyond investment selection, and work towards developing mutually beneficial partnerships," he said.
Most SMSFs intend to go to planners for their unmet advice needs, while 52 per cent were willing to consult an accountant.
SMSF planners were best equipped to cater to SMSF planners in all areas except tax planning.
Meanwhile, planners' revenue from SMSF clients failed to meet targets of 30 per cent, and stood at 21 per cent.
But planners were still aiming for revenue to hit 30 per cent in three years' time.
The research also found 30 per cent of planners wanted product issuers to provide low cost products, while many wanted education and training to help them cater to SMSF clients.
Planners also wanted SMSF clients to be educated on the value of seeking advice.