Buying a house, apartment or a rental property
Learn about the house buying process. Work out what you can afford before you start looking at properties.
Before you start house hunting
If you're thinking about buying you need to think about your goals and finances.
Check if the real estate agent you're dealing with is licensed — and if they’ve had any complaints upheld against them in the last 3 years.
If you're buying your first home, you may be able to get government help.
If you're from overseas
There are rules for buying or building residential property in NZ.
Checks to do before you buy
Check the property and include any issues as conditions before you make an offer. This means the agreement to purchase the house won't be finalised until you've satisfied all your conditions.
Get LIM reports and title searches before the sale and purchase agreement is finalised.
How to spot signs of common damage caused by a leaky home.
Making an offer
The sale and purchase agreement is legally binding.
If you don’t agree with something, tell the real estate agent — and get your lawyer to check the agreement before you sign.
Work out how much the house you want to buy is valued at.
A sale and purchase agreement covers the agreed terms and conditions of the sale or purchase.
Providing your tax details
You may need to give your property lawyer (or the person doing your conveyancing) your:
- New Zealand IRD number
- taxpayer identification number from any overseas countries where you have to pay tax on your worldwide income (if you have one).
A taxpayer identification number is the number that a country's tax agency gives you to pay tax. In New Zealand, our IRD number is our taxpayer identification number.
You don't need to provide these details if you're an NZ citizen (or have an NZ residence visa) and you're:
- selling your 'main home', and
- living in NZ now.
If you've been overseas continuously for more than a year, you may need to provide these details.
Buying a rental or investment property
If you buy a property that’s rented and the tenants have a fixed-term tenancy agreement, the tenants are entitled to stay until the date in the tenancy agreement and under the same conditions.
Find out about taxes when you have a rental property, what you can claim and what happens when you sell your rental property.
Problems with real estate agents
You can make a complaint against a real estate agent if you don’t think they’re meeting the standards they have to follow.