The KiwiSaver HomeStart Grant - What You Need to Know

Amin Osama, Tom Willis

May 2018 . . . In April 2015 the Government introduced the “Kiwisaver Homestart Grant” to assist first time home buyers with their funding for the purchase of a home.

The Grant is typically $3,000-$5,000, but varies depending on the type of property being purchased. It is usually paid to your solicitor on the settlement date. It can only be used to contribute towards the final settlement price.

AM I ELIGIBLE FOR A GRANT?

There a number of criteria that you need to satisfy to be eligible for the Grant:

If you sell the house or move out within 6 months then you may be required to repay the Grant.

HOW MUCH COULD I BE ELIGIBLE FOR?  

If you have had three full years of consistent minimum income percentage contributions to Kiwisaver (these three full years do not need to be consecutive) then you may be entitled to the Grant. The amount will depend on whether the house is existing or newly built:

Number of full years contributing (at least the minimum) to Kiwisaver Fund

Amount of Grant

Existing Property

New Build

Individual

Individual

1

Not eligible

Not eligible

2

Not eligible

Not eligible

3

$3,000

$6,000

4

$4,000

$8,000

5+

$5,000

$10,000

If purchasing an existing property, the Grant is calculated at $1,000 per year up to a maximum of five years and if you are purchasing a new build then the Grant is calculated at $2,000 per year up to a maximum of five years.

Grants can be joined together by eligible buyers when more than one person is purchasing a property. However, the maximum amount that can be paid out for any one property is:

WHAT ARE THE TIME FRAMES?

You can apply for pre-approval prior to entering into an agreement for sale and purchase. Pre-approval is valid for 180 days and streamlines the application process once you have entered into an agreement. If you have pre-approval then the official application needs to be submitted 10 working days prior to settlement.

If you don’t have pre-approval, then we recommend that the application is submitted at least 20 working days prior to settlement.

WHAT IF THIS IS NOT MY FIRST PROPERTY PURCHASE?

Provided that you satisfy all the other criteria listed above, you may still be eligible for the Grant.

To qualify for the Grant you cannot have “realisable assets” that are worth more than 20% of the property price cap for the area you are purchasing in.

“Realisable assets” are assets that you can sell to help you purchase the Property. These may include vehicles, boats, investment shares and other similar assets.

WHAT DO I NEED IN MY APPLICATION?

You need to include the following in your application:

 

We strongly encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity. If you have any concerns or questions about the Kiwisaver Homestart Grant then please get in touch with us. We can walk you through the application process or complete the application on your behalf.