New homes best choice for first time buyers 


Samantha and Simon Campbell at their new house on moving day. Photo: Supplied

A Hamilton real estate agent believes that buying a new house could be the best option for first home buyers.

Some buyers think that the only way to get their first home is to buy an old house and spend thousands of dollars fixing it up.

With the average median price of a house in Hamilton around $525,000, buying a home in the city is difficult for most people, let alone first home buyers.

However, with some banks offering a 10% Welcome Home deposit system and an increased loan to buy a new property, these first time buyers could find a way around the housing crisis.

Housing New Zealand says that the loan is designed for first home buyers who can afford to make regular repayments on a home loan, but have trouble saving for a large deposit.

“Banks are actually lending you a little bit more money and you can have less of a deposit. They’re kind of encouraging you to buy new at the moment,” said Deborah Herod from Lodge Hamilton.

“It’s hard to actually maintain and live on a wage, and save at the same time so I think people are having a hard time,” she said.

A young Hamilton couple, Samantha and Simon Campbell, recently bought their first home, a brand new three-bedroom in Enderley.

Samantha is a registered nurse at Waikato Hospital and Simon is a software engineer at Gallagher.

“We decided we should use our incomes to pay our own mortgage rather than someone else’s,” said Samantha, 23.

They said the hardest part about buying was the disappointment of missing out on houses they really liked, due to their budget.

After struggling to find a property for 4 months they decided to try with a newly built home.

“When purchasing a new house, we were able to purchase up to $450,000 and still be able to use the KiwiSaver HomeStart grant,” she said.

“We also became eligible for double the amount of the grant, thus had a larger deposit.”

The Campbells’ advice to young people wanting to buy is to start investing in KiwiSaver early and make the most of the grants and programmes available.