Dispelling KiwiSaver misconceptions
KiwiSaver is now well entrenched in New Zealand savings culture. However, there are a multitude of New Zealanders who, for a variety of reasons, still do not fully understand how it works. We have looked back over the past five years at the questions we get regularly asked and have compiled answers to these common misconceptions.
Can I continue to contribute after age 65?
Yes, you can continue contributing to your KiwiSaver savings for as long as you wish. After the age of eligibility for NZ Super (currently 65 years), the employer is no longer compelled to continue with contributions unless this is specified in a contract agreement.
Does the Government continue to pay member tax credits (MTC) after age 65?
No. The MTC is paid annually (around July/August) to members until they are eligible to withdraw their savings. This eligibility is currently age 65.
How can I get the maximum MTC if my regular contributions do not amount to $1,042.86 per annum?
The MTC provided by the Government is currently $521.43. You can make a voluntary contribution to your KiwiSaver savings to ensure you receive the full MTC amount.
When can I access my KiwiSaver savings?
Contributions to KiwiSaver are locked in until the age of eligibility for New Zealand Superannuation or five years after the first contribution, whichever is the later. However, it can be accessed earlier to assist with the purchase of a first home after at least three years' membership, upon proving significant hardship or serious illness, upon death, or one year after permanent emigration (to a country other than Australia).
Do first home buyers automatically receive the HomeStart grant?
No. There are a number of criteria one must meet to be eligible for a HomeStart grant. These include things like having contributed for a minimum of three years, purchasing a home under the maximum value for the region, income being within the income cap, being 18 years or older, and not currently owing land or property. Contact us for more details.
Can my kids or grandchildren receive MTCs?
That depends upon their age. You can contribute money to their KiwiSaver savings, but MTCs are only available once someone is 18 or over.