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01 August 2021

Kiwisaver and First Home Grant for Property Purchase

Kiwisaver and First Home Grant

If you are purchasing your first home and have been a KiwiSaver member for at least three years, you may be eligible to make a withdrawal of your savings. 


These funds can be applied either:-


  1. Towards the initial deposit, or

  2. As a contribution to the balance of the purchase price. 


Depending on your intended use of the funds, different timeframes apply, and it is therefore important that you obtain pre-approval from your KiwiSaver Provider before you start house-hunting.  We would also strongly recommend you discuss the process with us prior to submitting an offer on a property.  To assist, we have included links at the bottom of this article to some of the common Kiwisaver Providers’ withdrawal forms and information. 


With some exceptions, currently you can withdraw your contributions, the contributions made by your employer and the Government, as well as any interest you have earned, but you must leave $1,000 in your account.  Having pre-approval of the amount available for withdrawal will avoid any surprises down the track.


Once you have found a property and have had your offer accepted, you will need to make an appointment with our office to sign the withdrawal documents and provide the necessary evidence of identification and supporting documents.  Delays to the withdrawal may mean you incur penalties under the Sale & Purchase Agreement.  Many Sale & Purchase Agreements provide for a 10-working day confirmation period which may not be sufficient time for the withdrawal to be processed.  We suggest that this date for confirmation of conditions, where appropriate, be set at 15 working days to ensure the funds are available for the deposit when it falls due.  We are happy to guide you through timing matters in more detail.


Previous Home Owner – Second Chance Withdrawal


If you have already owned a home in the past but no longer do, you may apply for a second chance withdrawal of your KiwiSaver funds.  To qualify, you must have been a KiwiSaver member for at least three years, you must not have previously withdrawn your savings to purchase a home, and you must not have realisable assets that total more than 20% of the house price cap for an existing property that you are looking to buy.  Depending on the region you are looking to purchase in, and whether you intend to build a new house or buy an existing property, different price caps apply. 


You will need to obtain the approval of Kainga Ora before you can apply for your second chance KiwiSaver withdrawal.   Kainga Ora will consider your realisable assets, and if they are satisfied that you are in the same financial position as a first home buyer, they will approve your application.  The letter of approval must accompany your KiwiSaver withdrawal application.


HomeStart Grant


In addition to your KiwiSaver withdrawal, you may be entitled to the Kainga Ora HomeStart Grant.  Providing certain criteria are met, the Government may give you up to $5,000 ($1,000 per year that you have been contributing) towards the purchase of an older, existing home, or up to $10,000 ($2,000 per year) towards buying a new home or land to build a new home on.  You can apply for pre-approval of this Grant and it will be valid for six (6) months.


This Grant cannot be used for the payment of the initial deposit, but the funds will be made available to our trust account in time for settlement. 


When you have found a property to purchase, you will need to officially apply for the Grant.  Once the application has been approved, Kainga Ora will send us the forms directly for completion upon the Agreement becoming unconditional.


Please don’t hesitate to contact one of our Registered Legal Executives to assist you with your purchase.


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134 Victoria Street
Christchurch 8013

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