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Help for first home buyers: Welcome Home Loan

Getting on the housing ladder is tough. For many people, finding the 20% deposit for your first home is a huge challenge. To help assist first home buyers to overcome this hurdle, Housing New Zealand underwrite a product that allows people to purchase their first home with a 10% deposit.

What is the Welcome Home Loan?

The Welcome Home Loan is a low deposit loan that is available to individuals and couples looking to secure their first home. The loan is aimed at those with a 'modest' income and, if you meet the strict criteria, you can access the Welcome Home Loan with just a 10% deposit - instead of the usual 20%.

Welcome Home Loans are issued by selected lenders (including many of the major banks), and underwritten by Housing New Zealand.

Who is eligible?

As well as needing to meet the regular lending criteria of the lender, including your financial ability to pay off the loan, the minimum government criteria for a Welcome Home Loan includes:

1. Income Cap - To be eligible for a Welcome Home Loan your household income for the last 12 months must not have exceeded $85k before tax for individuals and $135k before tax if you are joining with one or more borrowers to buy a home.

2. 10% Deposit - Whilst the Welcome Home Loan is there to help those on a modest income to get on the housing ladder, you will still need a deposit of at least 10% of the property you are planning on buying. Your deposit can be gifted to you and, if eligible, you can also access your KiwiSaver HomeStart Grant, and first-home withdrawal to help you get there.

3. House Price Cap - There is a regional house price cap and the value of the house you are planning on buying must fall below this number for you to be eligible. The regional house price caps are as follows:

Region House Price Cap for existing properties House Price Cap for new properties
Auckland $600,000 $650,000
Urban Areas* $500,000 $550,000
Rest of New Zealand $400,000 $450,000

4. New Zealand Citizen - You must be a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident to qualify for this loan.


Get the right advice

Buying your first home can be daunting and there is a lot of information out there from banks, lending providers and home loan specialists. It's best to get advice from the experts – an Apex mortgage advisor will guide first home buyers through unknown territory, working out the best structure for their situation and doing all the hard work negotiating the best deals across all the lenders. The best thing is that our service doesn't cost a penny. Contact us to arrange a chat



*Hamilton City, Tauranga City, Western Bay of Plenty District, Kapiti Coast District, Porirua City, Upper Hutt City, Hutt City, Wellington City, Tasman District, Nelson City, Waimakariri District, Christchurch City, Selwyn District, Queenstown Lakes District