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KiwiSaver Home Ownership Features

August 17, 2017

KiwiSaver is a voluntary, work-based savings initiative to help you with your long-term saving for retirement. It has a range of membership benefits, including two features that can help you buy your first home: the KiwiSaver HomeStart grant and the KiwiSaver first-home withdrawal. Both of these features can also be used to help buy land to build a house on. Members of complying funds and exempt employer schemes may also be eligible for the HomeStart grant.


KiwiSaver HomeStart grant


The KiwiSaver HomeStart grant was introduced on 1 April 2015, replacing the KiwiSaver first-home deposit subsidy. Like the KiwiSaver first-home deposit subsidy, the KiwiSaver HomeStart grant provides eligible first home buyers with a grant of up to $5,000 for individuals and up to $10,000 for couples to put towards the purchase of an existing home. In addition, the new KiwiSaver HomeStart grant also provides eligible first-home buyers with up to $10,000 for individuals and up to $20,000 for couples to help with the costs of purchasing a brand new home.


If the property is your primary residence for at least six months from settlement date, the grant is not required to be paid back. If you move out before six months, you may be required to pay the HomeStart grant back, with interest. There are certain eligibility criteria to meet, including household income, your minimum contributions to KiwiSaver and the price of the house you wish to buy. For more information on the deposit subsidy, call 0508 935 266 or visit www.harcourts.house/homestart.


KiwiSaver first-home withdrawal


If you have been a member of KiwiSaver for at least three years, you may be able to withdraw all, or part, of your savings to put towards buying your first home. Changes to the KiwiSaver first-home withdrawal scheme also introduced on 1 April 2015 mean that all contributions, including tax credits, can be withdrawn (with the exception of the Government’s $1,000 kickstart).


If you are a first-home buyer, please contact your KiwiSaver provider or complying fund provider to apply. If you have owned a home before but are in a similar financial position to a first-home buyer, you may still be eligible for the first-home withdrawal. Housing New Zealand will determine this before you apply to your scheme provider. For more information on the first-home withdrawal, visit www.harcourts.house/kiwisaver or call 0508 935 266.


Information and advice


If you need some advice, or are not sure of the advice you’ve been given, visit your local Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) website www.cab.org.nz or call 0800 367 222.

Looking for information about buying a house, including home loan information, and guides to auctions and open homes? Visit the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand website www.reinz.co.nz or call 09 379 8471. For a property lawyer, visit the New Zealand Law Society Property Law Section website www.propertylawyers.org.nz. Looking for a registered valuer? Visit the Harcourts website, www.harcourts.house/property or you can send an email to National Property, national@property.org.nz or call 0800 698 258. For information on property insurance, visit the Insurance Council of New Zealand, please visit www.harcourts.house/insurancecouncil or call 04 472 5230.


Looking for budgeting advice? Contact a budgeting service. Members of the New Zealand Federation of Family Budgeting Service (Inc) are listed in the white pages of your telephone book under ‘Budget Advice Services’.


Looking for a suitably qualified and registered building surveyor? Visit the New Zealand Institute of Building Surveyors website www.harcourts.house/buildingsurveyors or call 0800 11 34 00. For independent money and budgeting advice visit Sorted at www.harcourts.house/sorted or www.sorted.org.nz.




For a free no obligation chat on any real estate matters feel free to call or email me anytime. Vinay Kumar 0275643112 or vinay.kumar@harcourts.co.nz






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