We’re often asked this question by people approaching retirement. While I can’t give specific advice, here’s how I’d approach the issue.
NZ Super is designed to cover basic expenses only. If you’re 65 and have few other resources, Super will provide a barebones income to make ends meet. But that’s all.
As you approach retirement your goal should be zero debt and a mortgage-free home. It doesn’t make sense to pay interest on bank loans when you need every dollar for daily expenses. So if you have a KiwiSaver lump sum at age 65, consider retiring any debt you might still have. I stress this is general advice, and you should have a one-to-one conversation with a qualified adviser if this applies to you.
“Should I use KiwiSaver to buy my first home?”
Turning from the over-65s, what is the best course of action for young people looking to get on the housing ladder?
Once again, I cannot give specific advice, but I can share what I see in the marketplace, which is that 95% of first-home buyers need this money to scrape together a large enough deposit. So if you are serious about getting into your first home, it makes sense to look at the lump sum you’ve saved in any KiwiSaver accounts.
I’ll add here that I don’t sell KiwiSaver so I’m not pitching for your business. But if you want to discuss your money questions, I’m here to talk.