Nau mai, haere mai. On 1 October, Housing New Zealand joined HLC and KiwiBuild to form Kāinga Ora – Homes and Communities.

Information on this site is still current. For more information about Kāinga Ora visit the Kāinga Ora website.

KiwiSaver first-home withdrawal

Published: 26 August 2019

If you have been a member of KiwiSaver for at least three years, you may be able to withdraw all, or part, of your savings to put towards buying your first home.

Eligible members can withdraw their KiwiSaver savings (including tax credits). However at least $1,000 must remain in their KiwiSaver account.

You must intend to live in the property. It cannot be used to buy an investment property.

If you are a member of a complying fund, you may be able to withdraw your savings to help you buy your first home. Not all complying funds permit withdrawals for this purpose, so you will need to discuss this with the trustees of your complying fund.

What do I need to do to apply for a first-home withdrawal?

First-home buyer

If you are a first-home buyer, please contact your KiwiSaver provider or complying fund provider to apply. You do not need to apply for this through Housing New Zealand.

Previous home owner

If you are a previous home owner, you will still need to apply through your scheme provider; however Housing New Zealand will initially need to determine whether you are a qualifying person. If you are deemed to be in the same financial position as a first home buyer, the letter produced by Housing New Zealand will need to be forwarded to your KiwiSaver scheme provider, to assist with your application to withdraw your KiwiSaver contributions.

If you are applying for a KiwiSaver first-home withdrawal determination as a previous home owner, do you meet the following:

  • You have not previously withdrawn your KiwiSaver funds to buy a home
  • You have been a member of KiwiSaver for at least three years
  • You have previously owned property, but no longer own any interest/share in property
  • You do not have realisable assets totalling more than 20% of the house price cap for an existing/older property in the area that you are looking to buy in. Housing New Zealand considers the following to be realisable assets:
    • Money in bank accounts (including fixed and term deposits)
    • Shares, stocks and bonds
    • Investments in banks or financial institutions
    • Building society shares
    • Any money paid to, or held by, the real estate agent or solicitor as a deposit on the property
    • A boat or caravan (if the value is over $5,000)
    • Additional vehicles (such as classic motorbikes or cars – not being used as your usual method of transport)
    • Other individual assets valued over $5,000

Realisable assets caps

RegionHouse price cap for existing/older propertiesRegional asset cap
Auckland, Queenstown Lakes District $600,000 $120,000
Hamilton City, Tauranga City, Western Bay of Plenty District, Kapiti Coast District, Porirua City, Upper Hutt City, Hutt City, Wellington City, Tasman District, Nelson City, Waimakariri District, Christchurch City, Selwyn District $500,000 $100,000
Rest of New Zealand $400,000 $80,000

The withdrawal is administered by the KiwiSaver scheme provider or relevant complying fund manager and if approved the payments of the funds will be paid to your solicitor on or before settlement day.

Housing New Zealand is only involved in the savings withdrawal if you have previously owned a home or land. If you currently own a home, land or have a share in a property, you will not be eligible for this feature.

If you are a previous home owner and want to apply for both the First Home Grant and the KiwiSaver Withdrawal Determination, you need to complete two separate applications.

Get your application started(external link)

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