Finding the right home

Buying a new home is an exciting undertaking, especially if it's your first. Before you start searching, it’s a good idea to consider what your needs and priorities are right now, and how they may change over the coming years.

What to think about

Finding the right home can take time. Identifying what is important to you can help you narrow down your options and rank your priorities. You should consider:

  • Where you want to live and in what kind of neighbourhood
  • The type and style of home you want (e.g. an apartment or townhouse)
  • How much room you’ll need and many people will be living there
  • What amenities you would like nearby (e.g. local shops, parks or public transport)
  • What your commute to work could be like

Different types of homes will offer different benefits and also require different costs to upkeep and maintain. In addition to your home loan repayments, think about what the council rates for the area are, what your home and insurance costs may be, what utilities you might need installed and if you have any ongoing body corporate fees.

Attend an open home

Attending an open home or display suite is one of the best way to get a first-hand experience of the look and feel of a home, see the local community, and to make sure you will be situated close to everything you need. Open home details are updated regularly on the available homes page or you can subscribe to the KiwiBuild mailing list  to receive regular updates in areas you are interested in.

Read more about what to look for at an open home at settled.govt.nz/viewing-an-open-home

Find a lawyer or solicitor

Having your own lawyer or solicitor is an important part of the home buying process, and you should always seek independent legal advice when you are thinking about buying a home. They will provide you with conveyancing services, review any contracts or agreements, and represent your interests when negotiating with the seller on your behalf.

You can find a national list of lawyers and legal practices at lawsociety.org.nz

Buying off the plan means that you are purchasing a new home before construction has been completed. You will still be able to get a feel for the final home by viewing architectural plans or renders, and by visiting display suites where available. You should also consider that:

  • There will time delay between your offer to buy and taking possession of your home.
  • The build may take longer to complete than initially planned.
  • Your financial circumstances or lending criteria may change.
  • You will need a Code of Compliance Certificate on completion.