What is KiwiSaver?
KiwiSaver is a voluntary work-based savings initiative that makes it easier for you to save for your future. Money is put into a KiwiSaver scheme from your weekly, fortnightly or monthly pay.
Once you join KiwiSaver your savings are generally locked-in until you reach the age of eligibility for New Zealand Superannuation (currently 65), or for five years for people who join after age 60.
You may be able to make an early withdrawal of part (or all) of your savings if you're:
buying your first home
moving overseas permanently
suffering significant financial hardship
You can choose to contribute 3%, 4%, 6%, 8% or 10% of your gross (before tax) salary or wages to KiwiSaver and in most cases your employer must contribute a minimum of 3% of your gross salary or wages to KiwiSaver.
Who can join?
You can join KiwiSaver if you’re:
Under the age of eligibility for New Zealand Superannuation (currently 65),
A New Zealand citizen, or entitled to live in New Zealand indefinitely, and
Living or normally living in New Zealand.
Enrolment in KiwiSaver will be automatic for all those starting a new job (with some exceptions), although employees automatically enrolled will have the chance to opt out (within a specified timeframe). Other people can choose to opt in to KiwiSaver but can’t then opt out.
KiwiSaver allows you to save on a regular basis and helps you better prepare for your retirement in a way that a regular savings account can't.
The AMP KiwiSaver Scheme is the preferred scheme of AMP City Financial Services and is one of nine default KiwiSaver schemes. It offers a range of funds that aim to help you save for your retirement.
AMP has been providing retirement savings solutions and advice to New Zealanders since 1854.
KiwiSaver currently offers several benefits* including:
an annual government contribution of 50 cents for every dollar you save, up to a maximum of $521.43 (if eligible);
compulsory contributions from your employer (if eligible), and
help with buying a first home.
* Not all KiwiSaver members will be entitled to receive these benefits and these benefits will change from time to time.
Your employer and government contributions work with your own contributions to boost your savings. That's why KiwiSaver may be more effective than a regular savings plan in helping you meet your retirement savings goals.
Kiwisaver helps you buy your first home.
For those in the Kiwisaver scheme there are two ways it can help you fund the deposit for your first home. There is the Kiwisaver first home withdrawal and KiwiSaver First Home Grant.
KiwiSaver first home withdrawal
To be able to use your Kiwisaver to help purchase your first home, you must be a member and have been contributing for a minimum of three years. You will be able to withdraw all your savings except for $1,000. Other key points to note are:
- The house you purchase must be owner occupied.
- You cannot use it to purchase an investment property.
Using a KiwiSaver First Home Grant
You are eligible for the KiwiSaver First Home Grant if you have been contributing the minimum amount to KiwiSaver for three years, and you meet the following criteria:
- be 18 years or over;
- be purchasing or building your first home at a price that is within the regional house price caps;
- have a household income of less than $85,000 per year (for one person) or less than $130,000 per year (for two or more people);
- have a minimum of 5% deposit (including the grant), and
- must live in the house for a minimum of 6 months
Individuals can get up to $5,000 ($1,000 for each year of being a member of Kiwisaver to a maximum of five years) who are buying an older or existing home. Couples can get up to $10,000. For those building a new home, individuals can receive an additional grant of up to $10,000 and couples can get as much as $20,000 of additional funds.
Contact us now to discuss our assistance in working with KiwiSaver.
We offer you a free, no-obligation consultation where we can answer all your questions and offer valuable guidance. For personalised advice we will refer you to one of the specialist investment advisers we work with.