In New Zealand we have First home Grants (previously known as HomeStart Grants) available for people that have been regularly contributing to KiwiSaver and who are buying their first home.
What First Home Grant Can You Get?
You might be entitled to a First Home Grant if you have belonged and contributed to a KiwiSaver scheme for a minimum of 3-years.
The HomeStart Grant you get is then dependent on the number of years you have contributed and you get a larger grant when purchasing a new home as follows;
3-years of contributing = $3,000 for an existing house or $6,000 for a new home
4-years of contributing = $4,000 for an existing house or $8,000 for a new home
5-years of contributing = $5,000 for an existing house or $10,000 for a new home
This is per person, so a couple might be eligible for twice these amounts.
CLICK HERE to use the calculator developed to help you establish if you meet the criteria and estimate the HomeStart Grant that you could be entitled to.
This Is FREE Money For First Home Buyers
The First Home Grant is designed to help first home buyers get into their own home and like most grants (or free money) there is some criteria attached to receiving the grant;
- You must be at least 18-years old and the First Home Grant is only available for your first home. If you own other property and even a rental property you are not eligible.
- In the last 12-months you must have earned less than $130,000 gross income for a couple or $85,000 for a single.
- The First Home Grant is “free money” on the condition that you live in the house for a minimum of 6-months; otherwise you may be required to pay it back.
- The First Home Grant is only provided once to buy your first home. This means that if you have previously received the First Home Grant or its predecessors (HomeStart Grant, then the KiwiSaver Deposit Subsidy) then you may not qualify for a second time, unless you can show that you are in the same financial position as a first home buyer.
- The first home that you buy needs to be purchased below the price caps which are;
House price caps
|Region||Existing/older properties||New properties|
|Kāpiti Coast District, Porirua City, Upper Hutt City, Hutt City, Wellington City||$550,000||$650,000|
|Hamilton City, Tauranga City, Western Bay of Plenty District, Waipa District, Hastings District, Napier City, Nelson City, Tasman District||$525,000||$600,000|
|Waimakariri District, Christchurch City, Selwyn District||$500,000||$550,000|
|Waikato District, Dunedin City||$425,000||$550,000|
|Rest of New Zealand||$400,000||$500,000|
Regions are defined by city and district council boundaries. Refer to the Stats NZ map for Territorial Authority boundaries. Ensure the layer selected is ‘Territorial Authority’.
Our mortgage advisers want to make the first home buying process as easy as possible for you and part of that is often to get access to your First Home Grant.
You can CLICK HERE to find out how to apply for a First Home Grant. If you are getting ready to buy your first home then it is a good idea to apply for a pre-approval for the grant, and they are then valid for 6-months but can be renewed if needed.
Contact us today and we can discuss how we can help make the process easier for you.