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Kiwisaver for first home buyers

By Gibson Sheat

Kiwisaver for first home buyers

If you have been contributing to KiwiSaver for 3 years or more, your Kiwisaver withdrawal may include:

  • your members contributions
  • any employer contributions (voluntary and compulsory)
  • any returns on investment(s) received
  • any member tax credits.

You may also be eligible for a Kiwisaver HomeStart Grant. The value of the grant differs depending on whether you are purchasing an existing home or building new.

Contributing for

Existing home

New build Property

3 years
$3,000
$6,000
4 years
$4,000
$8,000
5 years or more
$5,000
$10,000

 

Do I qualify for the Kiwisaver HomeStart Grant?

  • I am 18 or over
  • I have not received the HomeStart Grant or its predecessor the KiwiSaver Deposit Subsidy before.
  • I am a member of a Kiwisaver scheme, complying fund or exempt employer scheme
  • I meet the stipulated income cap thresholds of:
    1. $85K or less in the last 12 months (before tax) for a (single purchaser)
    2. a combined income of $130K or less in the last 12 months (before tax) (for two or more purchasers)

Property

  • I currently do not own any interest in a home or land, or have any registerable interest in property pursuant to the Property (Relationships) Amendment Act, that I could reasonably be expected to live in or sell.
  • I have a deposit that is 10% or more of the purchase price. The deposit cannot be borrowed or secured against other property, equity gifts, credits on settlement, or family guarantees in order to qualify. The 10% deposit includes:
    • the money you can withdraw through the KiwiSaver first-home withdrawal feature,
    • the HomeStart grant amount you or the other purchasers may be eligible for and
    • any other funds, such as savings, fixed and term deposits or funds already paid to a real estate agent or solicitor. The deposit can also be gifted by a relative with a gifting declaration.
  • I am buying one of the following types of property and land arrangements:
    • fee simple
    • stratum estate (freehold and leasehold)
    • cross-lease (freehold and leasehold)
    • leasehold
    • Maori land
  • I am purchasing an equal share in a property proportionate to the number of intended property owners.
  • If I am buying a property through a private treaty agreement (specifically where the vendor is a family member) the purchase price is a fair market price - this could be evidenced by a valuation report.
  • The purchase price of the property is within the regional house price caps as shown in the below table:

Region

House price cap for existing/older properties

House price cap for new properties

Auckland

$600,000

$650,000

Hamilton City, Tauranga City, Western Bay of Plenty District, Kapiti Coast District, Porirua City, Upper Hutt City, Hutt City, Wellington City, Tasman District, Nelson City, Waimakariri District, Christchurch City, Selwyn District, Queenstown Lakes District

$500,000

$550,000

Rest of New Zealand

$400,000

$450,000

Restrictions when using Kiwisaver

It important to note the restrictions on purchasing property using the HomeStart Grant:

  • You cannot purchase a company share flat
  • You must live in the house you buy (it cannot be an investment property)
  • You must buy the house in your personal name(s) – not in a trust. This will have implications for those who wish to place property in trust to protect it from future relationship property claims, and will mean that first home buyers will need to consider entering into a Contracting Out Agreement with their partner in order to protect their equity in the property.
  • If you have previously had an interest in a home (e.g. you lived with someone for more than three years in a house owned by them, and then separated and received half the equity in that home) you will not be eligible for the withdrawal or the HomeStart grant (though you may qualify for a second chance).

However, you may use the grant to build on Maori land, and having an existing interest in multiply-owned Maori land will not necessarily disqualify someone from obtaining a HomeStart grant.

Contact the experts

If you have any questions about the Kiwisaver Withdrawal or Kiwisaver HomeStart Grant, contact the experts at The Conveyancing Company (the Property division of Gibson Sheat Lawyers), who will be able to step you through the process.

Wellington
Marie Colling Legal Executive, Associate +64 4 916 7484

Lower Hutt
Paula Campbell Legal Executive, Associate +64 4 916 6454

Masterton
Lisa Searle Legal Executive +64 6 370 6480


Our specialists have all the knowledge and expertise you need to ensure that you have all the bases covered when buying your first home.

 

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