Joining KiwiSaver is popular – but what are the main reasons to sign up? 

1. Your employer and the government give you money

Your employer will put in 3 per cent of your salary – but some put in more (good on them!).

And, provided you contribute more than NZ$20 a week, the government will give you an extra NZ$521 each year. Free money – why wouldn’t you want to get that? 

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2. It can help you get into your own home

You can use your KiwiSaver money as a deposit for your first home (as long as you meet a few requirements). Many young Kiwis are using their KiwiSaver balance as a part of their deposit. 

Through KiwiSaver, you also might be eligible for extra money from the government to help you into your first home – the HomeStart grant.

With the HomeStart grant you could get up to NZ$5,000 if you’re buying an existing house, or NZ$10,000 if you’re building a home. 

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3. It’s an easy way to save

The way KiwiSaver is set up means it’s a really easy way to save. Your contributions are taken out of your salary, so you don’t have to think about it. You can’t touch the money (except in certain circumstances), so you won’t be tempted to dip into it. 

Calculate your savings with JUNO

Through your KiwiSaver provider, you should be able to easily find out your balance. Don’t forget to check it from time to time to inspire and motivate you. Start to feel good as your KiwiSaver balance grows!

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4. You’ll earn money on your contributions

Many people think your KiwiSaver balance is just what you, your employer and the government put in. 

But the money is invested, so you’ll also earn interest. If you leave your money in, you then earn interest on the interest.

Depending on which fund you’re in, your balance might go up and down a bit. But don’t panic if you lose money from time to time. Over the long-term, your balance should go up.

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5. It means your retirement could be more comfortable

It’s pretty normal to forget about your retirement, when it might be a long way away. After all, who knows what you’ll be up to in 20, 30, maybe even 50 years! But the retirement landscape is changing in New Zealand. 

We’re living longer, due to advances in medical technology. 

Living expenses have also increased too, and not everyone will have a mortgage-free home in retirement, like many of our parents did. Many of us aren’t retiring at 65 for a range of reasons – maybe we enjoy keeping busy, or we simply can’t afford to stop earning yet. 

With all these factors, it means that New Zealand Superannuation might not give you the lifestyle you’d like.

So, what happens then? It’s likely you’ll need extra money to keep you going through your retirement and, for many, KiwiSaver money will be a large part of that.

Even if you’re not going to be retiring for quite a few years, it’s worth thinking about keeping up your KiwiSaver contributions. It’s also a great idea to ask yourself if you can afford to increase them. 

Join JUNO KiwiSaver Scheme

Published August 2018

Story by Claire Connell, JUNO

We aim to make investment with KiwiSaver easy to understand. To help us make this article reader friendly, we used The Write Plain Language Standard.

All content is correct at time of publication date. This article is general in nature only and has not taken into account any particular person’s objectives or circumstances. We recommend you speak with a financial adviser.