Kainga Ora First Home Partner – 5 Things you need to Know
SM Property

April 19, 2023

Are you looking to buy your first home, but unsure of where to start? Or perhaps you really want to get on the property ladder, but don’t quite have enough finances for a property? If this is the case, it’s worth looking into the Kainga Ora First Home Partner program (KOFHP). This government initiative can help provide assistance to first home buyers, but before you apply, here are five things you need to know:

Eligibility Criteria

To qualify for the program, you must be over 18 years old and a New Zealand citizen or resident. You also need to have a total household income before tax of less than $150,000. It has to be the first time you’ve received shared ownership support from Kainga Ora. You must also be purchasing the property as a home buyer, and commit to living there as your primary place of residence for at least three years from your settlement date.

Deposit Requirements

You must provide evidence that you have a minimum contribution of 5% towards the purchase price of the home you want to buy. This can include cash savings, Kiwisaver first-home withdrawal, First Home Grant approval, or gifted money from a family member.

Required Documents

As part of the application process, you will need to provide electronic copies of several key documents. This can include photo identification, proof of income, copies of bank accounts and evidence of deposit, and a statutory declaration.


Getting pre-approved for a home loan from a participating bank is essential before applying for the program. This will help you understand your budget and potential buying power, as well as speed up the process for getting full loan approval when you’ve found a home you want to buy.

Understanding the Home Buying Process

Creating a budget will help you understand what type of property you can afford to buy. It’ll also help you set clear budgets and savings goals, and give you an idea of how much you need to borrow. Once you have identified an eligible property that you can afford, you will need to contact Kainga Ora. They will need to confirm the property satisfies the conditions outlined in your Commitment Agreement, and begin the co-purchasing process.

Kainga Ora First Home Partner isn’t the only shared ownership scheme out there to help Kiwis into their first home. Head to our previous blog here all about other alternative ways to get into a home quicker.

The Kainga Ora First Home Partner program can be a fantastic opportunity for more first home buyers to enter the property market. Make sure to visit the Kainga Ora Website for the full terms and conditions. The SM Property team can help you through your KOFHP journey, so make sure to contact us if you want to know more, or where to start!

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