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Three things to do before you buy your first KiwiBuild home

Buyers  |  18 January 2019  | By The settled.govt.nz team

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Here are three key things to do before you start your home-buying journey with KiwiBuild.

1. Get Ready

If you wish to buy a KiwiBuild home, ensure you are eligible and pre-qualified.

Take a good look at your finances – this mortgage calculator can help you work out how much your home loan repayments are likely to be.

Talk to a bank or lender about getting pre-approval for a home loan so you know exactly how much you can spend. You could be eligible for a Welcome Home Loan to help with reducing the cost of your mortgage if you only have a small deposit.

Look into whether you want to use your KiwiSaver to help with your deposit, and whether you are eligible for a KiwiSaver HomeStart Grant of up to $20,000.

Get a lawyer lined up to help you understand all the paperwork. Check here to find a property lawyer in your area.

2. Learn about the property

It’s important to do your homework about a property before you buy. KiwiBuild homes that are available to buy are listed here.

We recommend that you visit the home or building site and talk to the real estate agent to learn all about the home you wish to buy. 

3. Understand the buying process

Buying a house in New Zealand is usually done through a licensed real estate agent who is paid by the seller.

KiwiBuild homes are typically sold through a ballot or a ‘first come, first served’ basis to pre-qualified KiwiBuild buyers. If there is anything you don’t understand about these processes, ask the real estate agent and your lawyer.

In the open market, in most cases, you’ll make an offer by filling in and signing a sale and purchase agreement. For KiwiBuild homes, there is a fixed price and you will sign the sales and purchase agreement if you are successful in a ballot or decide to buy a home that is available through ‘first come, first served’.

This agreement is a legal contract that sets out how much you will pay for the home including the deposit, any conditions of the offer and when the change of ownership will take place. You and the seller both sign this contract, and then work to meet any conditions in it. This agreement becomes unconditional when all the conditions are met.

Then you can look forward to settlement day, which is when you pay the balance of the purchase price and the property becomes yours. 

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