Commonly asked questions for first home buyers

Can I use my KiwiSaver as a deposit?

Yes, if this is your first home and providing you have been contributing for three years or longer. If this is not your first home you may also be eligible depending on your financial position and individual circumstances.

 

How do I get my KiwiSaver out?

This will need to be done through a solicitor / lawyer. They will liaise directly with your KiwiSaver provider.

 

Do I qualify for a HomeStart Grant?

If you have been contributing to your KiwiSaver for three years or more you may receive between $3,000 – $5,000 for an existing home and between $6,000 – $10,000 if you are building. The qualifying criteria is that an individual may not earn more than $85,000 and a couple no more than $130,000. There are also limits in each region as to how much you can spend. In Christchurch the limit is $500,000 for an existing home and $550,000 if you are building (including the section).

A pre approval will last for six months. Apply for your HomeStart Grant online here.

 

Can my parents gift me some money?

Yes they can. However, they will be required to sign a gift certificate confirming the gift is non repayable and they will not take a caveat over the property you are purchasing.

 

How much deposit do I need?

A minimum of 10% is normally required. However, each bank has different eligibility criteria and it changes.

 

Do I need a savings record?

Your KiwiSaver is classed as a savings record. However, if you do save regularly into any bank account this will strengthen the application.

 

Will a bad debt prevent my ability to obtain a mortgage?

It will depend on the circumstances around the bad debt being incurred, the amount, and if the debt is still outstanding or if it is historical.

We deal with a number of second tier lenders who are more lenient around bad debts.

 

I have money owing on a Credit Card and am still paying off a student loan how will this affect my application?

It will depend on how much is owing on credit cards or any other personal loans, HP’s and so on. Although a student loan is a debt as such it is not looked at detrimentally and the success of the application will be dependent on earnings vs outgoings.

So essentially it would depend on the amount of the debt and your earnings.

 

How long does a pre approval last for?

A pre approval will last for three months, if nothing has changed in your financial situation we can ask for an extension for a further 3 months. After this time a new application will need to be submitted.

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