You have two options when it comes to using your KiwiSaver to help you buy your first home. There is the first home withdrawal, which you uses your own KiwiSaver funds. Then there is the HomeStart grant. Most first home buyers can qualify for the KiwiSaver withdrawal, it’s a little harder to qualify for the KiwiSaver HomeStart grant.
You can apply for the HomeStart grant after three years of regularly contributing to your KiwiSaver fund. If there was a time you weren’t working and contributing to KiwiSaver, that time will be deducted from your KiwiSaver HomeStart grant. To be eligible for the grant your income must be less than $85,000 a year as one person or 130,000 as two or more people. The maximum KiwiSaver HomeStart grant per property is $10,000 (for a “second-hand” home) or $20,000 (for a new home).
If you are buying an old/existing home, you will receive $1,000 for every year that you contribute to KiwiSaver. Eg:
3 years of contributing = $3,000 (the minimum you can get)
4 years of contributing = $4,000
5 years of contributing = $5,000 (the maximum you can get).
If you are planning to build/purchase a new home, you are entitled to receive $2,000 each year of contribution to your KiwiSaver. There are some other eligibility criteria that you will need to meet. It would look like:
3 years of contributing = $6,000 (the minimum you can get)
4 years of contributing = $8,000
5 years of contributing = $10,000 (the maximum you can get)
The eligibility for the grant is determined by Housing New Zealand. It might be worth to not that Housing New Zealand requires at least four weeks/20 working days from receiving an application through to paying out the KiwiSaver HomeStart grant. Ensure that if you are applying for the grant in order to meet the financial conditions of your agreement for sale and purchase, you do so at least 10 working days prior to the unconditional date. Applications that do not provide the required four weeks’ notice may not be accepted and therefore the KiwiSaver HomeStart grant may not be paid out. The KiwiSaver HomeStart grant will not be paid out after settlement has occurred. If you are looking for your first home but haven’t yet found the right house, you can apply for pre-approval of your KiwiSaver HomeStart application. These are valid for six months and will also assist you when applying for finance pre-approval. Once pre-approved and within the 6 month period, you only need to provide us with a copy of a signed agreement for sale and purchase, along with evidence that you have a deposit of at least 10% of the property purchase price, no later than 10 working days prior to the settlement date.
To find out more talk to one of our mortgage advisers click here
Great article about the grant and the requirements: http://www.canstar.co.nz/kiwisaver/12-kiwisaver-first-home-tricks-for-the-unwary/
To find out more go to: http://www.hnzc.co.nz/ways-we-can-help-you-to-own-a-home/kiwisaver-homestart-grant-and-savings-withdrawal/kiwisaver-homestart-grant/applying-as-a-previous-home-owner/
Go throught a checklist: http://www.hnzc.co.nz/ways-we-can-help-you-to-own-a-home/kiwisaver-homestart-grant-and-savings-withdrawal/kiwisaver-homestart-grant/homestart-grant-eligibility-checklist/
Application Form: https://hera.power-business.co.nz/hnz/HomeStart.nsf
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