The Government recently announced a number of changes to their programme to assist New Zealanders into home ownership. The following changes take effect from 1 October 2019:
- The KiwiSaver HomeStart Grant will become the "First Home Grant"
- The minimum deposit requirement for the First Home Grant will reduce to 5% (currently 10%) for both new and existing homes (also referred to as properties in their programme).
- The First Home Grant can be paid to all buyers, who are eligible for the grant, where there are three or more buyers, by removing the current cap of $10,000 for existing homes or $20,000 for a new home, or land for a new home.
- The definition for new properties for First Home Grants will be amended to define new properties as properties where the Building Code Compliance Certificate was issued less than twelve months before the date of the first home buyer’s First Home Grant application (currently this is six months).
- The Welcome Home Loan will be renamed the "First Home Loan"
- The minimum deposit requirement for First Home Loan will reduce to 5% for both new and existing homes.
From 1 October, Housing New Zealand will become part of a new organisation called Kāinga Ora - Homes and Communities. They will continue to assess grant applications, but will not be able to assess applications under the revised criteria until 1 October 2019.
If you are looking to buy your first home, please do not hesitate to contact Justine Bateman, Legal Executive (DDI 03 343 8382 / firstname.lastname@example.org).