In April 2015, National doubled support for first home buyers through the scheme. Low and middle-income couples can now apply for government grants of up to $20,000 to put towards a deposit for their first home.
In the first 12 months of the new scheme, 11,943 government grants were paid out, totalling more than $55.6 million.
These people who have received grants are spread right across the country and are buying homes in both main cities and in the regions.
About a third are in the main centres of Auckland, Wellington, and greater Christchurch but it also includes hundreds of people in places like Tauranga, Gisborne, Palmerston North, Nelson, Timaru, and Invercargill.
What’s more – a further 1670 additional applications have been pre-approved and those people are now looking for the right house to buy.
National is investing $435 million into this scheme and it’s expected to help around 90,000 Kiwis into their first home over five years.
Check out these stories about how KiwiSaver HomeStart is helping New Zealanders into their own homes.
Gary and Mandi Keable, Tauranga
Gary and Mandi bought their first home – a three-bedroom house in Bellevue, Tauranga – with the help of a government grant through the new KiwiSaver HomeStart scheme.
Both are aged in their early 30s – Gary’s a mechanic/auto electrician and Mandi is an applications administrator – and they have a young son, Bailey.
“Owning our own home is a dream come true,” says Mandi. “Without the government grant and our KiwiSaver savings we would not have been able to afford to buy our own home.”
They moved into their new home in July 2015.
“Without the government grant and our KiwiSaver savings we would not have been able to afford to buy our own home.”
Jake and Olivia, Christchurch
Jake and Olivia also bought their first home – a three-bedroom house in Christchurch East – with the help of a KiwiSaver HomeStart grant.
Both are in their mid-20s and are thrilled to be able to buy their first home.
Jake started his own business as a painter and decorator, and has been kept busy during the Canterbury rebuild. Olivia recently qualified with her nursing degree.
They say it wouldn’t have been possible for them to buy their own home without the KiwiSaver HomeStart grant.
They moved into their new home in November 2015.