Editorial: First-home buyers crippled

By Linda Hall

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New rules for lending may cripple some prospecting first-home buyers. Photo / File
New rules for lending may cripple some prospecting first-home buyers. Photo / File

I feel sorry for young couples trying to buy their first home. Especially for those who thought they were within reach only to have the mat pulled out from under them with the new rules governing mortgage lending.

From October 1, the majority of home loans will require a 20 per cent deposit.

And while that will mean repayments won't be quite so high, it also means to buy a modest $200,000 home you need to save $40,000.

That's a huge ask for couples who have young children and more than likely student loans.

It's not just going to affect them in the early stages of their married lives, either.

A home is, for most people, the biggest asset they have. It's a way to save for retirement.

If a large part of your weekly wage is being paid out in rent, there's not much hope of saving for a house as well.

And with the cost of living seemingly creeping up day by day it's getting harder and harder to put a some aside for retirement.

So the question then becomes what happens to people when they retire? Will superannuation still be available in 40 years' time?

I think KiwiSaver is fantastic. Maybe it should be compulsory. I wish I'd started saving the moment I entered the workforce, but like many others I didn't give retirement a thought. I have a long way to go yet but already the price of retirement scares me.

At the moment, people on superannuation get $357.42 per week for a single person and $549.88 for a couple after tax. If you have to pay rent out of this, there' s not a lot left to live on.

With New Zealand's population over the age of 65 set to double by 2030, retirement plans are something that need a lot of thought.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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