Assisting you through the full process of buying your first home
Buying your first home can be a daunting undertaking, so we’re here to remove technical language, simplify the process, and make sure you get a great mortgage.
Bankers work for the bank. Real estate agents work for the seller. We work for you – the home buyer. We do this every day, so we'll be able to answer all your questions, including:
If you’re thinking of buying your first home, and need an expert team on your side, get in touch.
Hunting for your first home can be both exciting and challenging. The main thing is to stay on track, even if setbacks and surprises occur. Below are some key aspects to keep you on the path to success.
Traditionally, a 20% deposit was required to secure property lending, leaving many first home buyers well short of their own home. The constantly evolving property and lending environment means that in many cases you can purchase with as little as a 5% deposit. Additionally, there are also several things that can complement the cash you already have set aside as your deposit. Options include:
KiwiSaver has several features which have helped many kiwis into their first home.
If you've been a member of KiwiSaver for at least three years, you may be able to withdraw some of your KiwiSaver investment to put toward purchasing your first home. You’ll most likely be eligible for a KiwiSaver first home withdrawal if:
By meeting the criteria above, you’ll be able to use your KiwiSaver investment to put toward the purchase of your first home. You'll need to leave a minimum balance of $1,000 in your KiwiSaver investment and you cannot withdraw any amount transferred from an Australian complying superannuation fund.
You could be eligible for a KiwiSaver First Home Grant of up to $5,000 to buy an existing home, or up to $10,000 if you are building or purchasing a newly built home. If you’re doing this with someone else and they're eligible, that means you could get up to $20,000 between you.
Kianga Ora administer this grant, so check with them to see if you are eligible. Income caps, house price caps and other criteria apply.
Once you understand your available deposit, you can take stock of your financial health and calculate how much you can afford to borrow. This is a critical step, and will give you a better idea of what you can afford to buy.
There are several factors to consider, and different lenders (mainly banks) often focus on different areas. Your income and credit score will be major components, but so are your debts, outgoings, and number of children. Plenty of online calculators will provide a good starting point - a quick online search will bring up dozens of them for you to try.
When it’s time for a more accurate figure, getting your mortgage pre-approved by one or more lenders is the next step. This is something one of our mortgage advisers (often referred to as mortgage brokers) can assist you with.
However, keep in mind that these are just estimates. To get the real picture, you’ll almost certainly need to do plenty of active research of your own.
The more open homes you attend, the more likely it is you’ll be able to piece together a realistic picture of your desired property, and its size, features, and location.
Letting a few real estate agents know what you’re looking for is also a good idea – if they’re good, they’ll contact you whenever those sorts of homes come onto the market, reducing the chances you’ll miss a great opportunity.
Before excitement takes over and you dive head-first into making an offer, there’s one important question to ask: is there more than meets the eye?
Real estate agents should tell you about any issues with a property they’re aware of, but what if they don’t know everything? What if there are hidden problems lurking under the floorboards?
A little expert help can save yourself from making costly mistakes. A good lawyer will help you identify contractual issues and problematic clauses, while a qualified inspector will check out the property from top to bottom, looking for issues. Their reports may cost upwards of $1,000, but they’re worth every cent.
When you’re confident this is the property you want it’s time to make an offer. This will differ based on the type of sale, for example: you may have to win a property auction, negotiate the price with the vendor, or put down the highest bid (tender).
Whatever the case, set yourself a reasonable budget and avoid overbidding. Knowing how much you can afford will help you keep emotional judgements to a minimum, allowing you to purchase on terms that meet your needs.
Assistance from us to help secure your first home is usually free to you, as we will be paid by the lender. So that you know our financial advisers (in this instance often referred to as a mortgage broker) are truly putting your interests first, our advisers are all paid a salary instead of commission. They also have no incentive to promote one lender over another.
By seeking our assistance, you’ll receive the following support:
To learn more you can download a complimentary copy of our Home buyer's guide. Or, if you’re ready to buy a house but need some experts to guide you through the number crunching, get in touch!
For a free and no-obligation chat with a mortgage broker about purchasing your first home, call 0508 232 663 or leave your details and query below. It'll be our pleasure to respond within one working day.
If you’re ready to get on the road to wherever you want to go or a Financial Health Check, now’s good. Tell us how we can help and we’ll be in touch.