Getting on the ladder with a little extra help
Getting a house deposit ready is no easy feat. Which is why it pays to get good advice and a little bit of an extra helping hand. Not everyone knows that there are a few additional ways to help you get over the line in putting your deposit together.
In New Zealand, there is a separate homes and community body called Kāinga Ora. It was established to provide for a government policy statement on housing and urban development. It also provides a means for home-related financial assistance and help and advice on matters relating to housing or services related to housing.
So, what does this mean for you as a first home buyer?
If you are looking to purchase your first home for your own living, you may be able to apply for what is known as a first home grant. This is a grant that Kāinga Ora provides.
You may be eligible for a First Home Grant up to $10,000 per person. A fantastic option for people looking to get into their first home and increasing their deposit.
It also means that if you and your partner apply you could potentially look at getting up to $20,000 from this grant.
What is the criteria needed? Am I Eligible?
- Over 18
- You are a first home buyer or a previous homeowner (not currently own any property)
- You have been regularly contributing to KiwiSaver for 3-5 years making at least the minimum 3% of total income.
Alongside these 3 conditions being met:
- You also must purchase a property that is within your preferred regional house price cap. And agree to live in your new house for at least six months.
- The house or land you wish to buy meets the property requirements.
For instance, the Auckland area has a price cap of $650,000 for new builds or $600,000 for property purchases that are existing/older properties.
(properties that received a building code compliance certificate more than 12 months before you apply for a First Home Grant are considered existing properties.)
In the previous 12 months before applying, you must have earned:
- $85,000 or less before tax for a single buyer.
- $130,000 or less before tax for 2 or more buyers.
There are also specific criteria concerning your KiwiSaver contributions
You don’t have to be contributing consecutively for 3 years however the total amount of contributing time must equate to more than 3 years.
Likewise, if you are self-employed or on a benefit and making voluntary contributions the contributions must be equate to at least once a year for 3 years voluntarily consisting of 3% of your annual income.
So how does it work?
You can apply two ways:
- Either you get a pre-approval before you start to look for a property to buy
- Or a grant approval if you have found a property and have already signed a sales and purchase agreement
Pre-approvals on First Home Grant are valid for 6months.
On successful offers on a property you must apply for a First Home Grant at least 4 weeks before settlement date.
Next to determine grant subsidy select which is appropriate to your situation
If the property you wish to purchase is an existing home, you can get $1000 for each of the 3 (or more up to 5 years max) years you’ve been contributing to KiwiSaver scheme. ($5,000 max)
New Home or land
If the property you wish to buy is a new build or land to build on you can get $2,000 for each of the of the 3 (or more up to 5 years max) years you’ve been contributing to KiwiSaver scheme. ($10,000 max)
If you have previously owned a property
Most people think that the first home grant only applies to a person looking to purchase their first home. However, if you are a previous homeowner you can still apply if you have not received the First Home Grant or KiwiSaver HomeStart grant or KiwiSaver deposit subsidy before and not had realisable assets worth more than 20% of the house price caps on existing properties for the area you wish to buy in.
To talk you through your options on how you can effectively put your deposit together talk to the team at Global Finance. They work through the process smoothly, get you financial assistance on purchasing your property and guide you on your property journey right from the very beginning.
Talk to the experienced mortgage team at Global Finance today! 09 255 5500 or contact us at email@example.com or our Facebook page.