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First Home Partner Scheme: Am I eligible under the newrules?

First Home Partner Scheme: Am I eligible under the newrules?

Market Trends
Words by
Jordan Cameron

First Home Partner Scheme Updates: Greater Opportunities Await!

Owning your first home just became easier! The First Home Partner Scheme, managed by Kainga Ora, has recently expanded its eligibility criteria, creating new opportunities for a wider range of Kiwis. Dive into the updates and discover if they pave the way for your dream home.

What is the First Home Partner Scheme?

The First Home Partner is a shared home ownership program between the aspiring homeowner and Kainga Ora. Designed primarily to assist those on the brink of homeownership, the scheme bridges the gap when your deposit and loan don't quite cover the house's total cost.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Minimum 5% of the house’s purchase price as a deposit.
  • Must meet the lending criteria of a participating bank (currently Westpac, BNZ, Kiwibank, and SBS).
  • Age 18 or older.
  • New Zealand citizenship or relevant visa.
  • A household income cap of $150,000 (up from $130,000).
  • A positive credit history.
  • Be a first-time home buyer.
  • No prior shared ownership support from Kainga Ora.
  • Reside in the purchased home for a minimum of three years post-settlement.

Recent Changes and Their Impact

One significant shift is that potential homeowners can now buy existing homes, a departure from the previous "new builds only" condition. This allows a broader choice range, ensuring more people can step into the first home buyer's arena.

The raised income cap, now at $150,000 from the former $130,000, mirrors the current economic scenario and property market dynamics, benefiting more families.

Furthermore, larger intergenerational families or whānau with at least six members living together find the scheme more accessible with the widened income criteria.

How Total Mortgages Can Guide Your Journey

Navigating the application process with Kainga Ora can be daunting. Our team at Total Mortgages ensures a smoother journey, assisting with:

  • Kainga Ora application.
  • Securing a pre-approval at competitive rates from a participating bank.

With both home loan and Kainga Ora pre-approvals in hand, you can confidently step into the property market, equipped with knowledge on the perfect house within your financial bracket. Plus, our support expedites your loan approval, once your dream house is chosen.

Client Spotlight: Sarah & Ben's Success Story

Earlier this year, Sarah and Ben approached us for assistance. Although they narrowly missed the previous criteria, the updated rules in August proved advantageous. Meeting the revised income guidelines and armed with an attractive pre-approval offer from a partner bank, they successfully bid on a Hamilton residence. Their moving day is just around the corner, marking the start of their new journey in their very own home.

Thinking of Applying? If prior applications through Kainga Ora didn’t favor you, the revised rules might change the game. Book a call with us today and step closer to your dream home.