Buying a Home

Using KiwiSaver and Government assistance to buy your first home

Buying a Home

Using KiwiSaver and Government assistance to buy your first home

First home buyers often need all the help they can muster to build a deposit and fund their first home purchase.

You may be eligible to receive Government assistance in the form of a KiwiSaver first home withdrawal, a KiwiSaver First Home Grant, or a First Home Loan (formerly known as a Welcome Home Loan).

Get the lowdown on these options below and speak with an adviser about your situation.

Are you eligible for a KiwiSaver first home withdrawal?

If you’ve been contributing to your KiwiSaver scheme for three years or more, you may be able to withdraw some of these savings to put towards the deposit for your first home.

If you meet the eligibility criteria, you may be able to withdraw your contributions, your employer’s contributions and any government contributions. If you qualify, you can withdraw as much of your KiwiSaver balance as you like, as long as you leave at least $1000 in the account.

Some of the key criteria you’ll need to meet to qualify are:

  • You’re planning to live in the home you are buying for at least six months (it won’t be an investment property)
  • You’ve been contributing at least 3% of your annual income to your KiwiSaver for at least three years

Are you eligible for a KiwiSaver First Home Grant?

If you’ve been contributing to your KiwiSaver scheme for three years or more and plan on purchasing an established home, you may qualify for a First Home Grant of $1,000 for each year you’ve been contributing, up to a limit of $5,000 (for five years or more).

If you are building a new home you may be eligible to get $2,000 for each year you’ve been paying into the scheme, up to a limit of $10,000.

Some of the eligibility requirements:

  • You must have a gross income of less than $85,000 for one buyer
  • Or a combined gross household income of less than $130,000 if there are two or more buyers
  • Your deposit must be at least 5% (can include KiwiSaver first home withdrawal and First Home Grant)
  • You must not currently own a property
  • The value of the property you plan on purchasing must be under the regional price caps:
    • Existing Homes
      • $600,000 in Auckland
      • $500,000 in most areas connected to a metropolitan population (i.e., Christchurch City, Hamilton City, Western Bay of Plenty District, Wellington City, Kapiti Coast District, etc.)
      • $400,000 in the rest of New Zealand
    • New Builds

      • $650,000 in Auckland
      • $550,000 in most areas connected to a metropolitan population (i.e., Christchurch City, Hamilton City, Western Bay of Plenty District, Wellington City, Kapiti Coast District, etc.)
      • $500,000 in the rest of New Zealand

Are you eligible for a First Home Loan (previously Welcome Home Loan)?

First Home Loans (previously named Welcome Home Loans) are only offered by certain lenders and are underwritten by Kāinga Ora (previously Housing New Zealand). These government-backed loans are designed to help give first-home buyers a leg up and are available to eligible buyers with a deposit of 5% or more.

In addition to the same gross income and regional property price caps mentioned above, borrowers’ eligibility for First Home Loans may depend on their:

  • Existing debts
  • Banking history
  • Credit history
First Home Buyer Success Stories

Simon and Katie buy their first home, and peace of mind

Location:
Woodend, Canterbury
Situation:
Buying first home and finding life insurance policy
Adviser:
Katy Pheloung and Tony Mounce
We were looking to buy our first home and get life insurance in the process. We had tried to talk to our bank but found them difficult to deal with.

We chose Tony Mounce Mortgages & Insurance as our advisers because everyone we talked to was easy to deal with and talked us through every step of the process without any pressure.

We spoke to them about our options and what it would take for us to get a mortgage, then went back to them a year later when we were in a position to go ahead.

A positive outcome without the stress
The outcome was perfect — we got a mortgage on the terms we wanted and have been able to build a beautiful home we designed ourselves.

The team stayed in contact with us every step of the way and made the process as smooth as it could be. We didn’t have to spend hours on the phone with the bank arranging anything or causing needless stress.

Customers for life
Our experience was awesome, and we’ll happily go to them again for any mortgage or insurance needs in future. They made every step of the process so easy, and everyone has been lovely and amazing to deal with.

You really feel like the team go above and beyond to get everything right for you. - Simon and Katie Cartwright

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