Can NZ citizens buy property in Australia?

This page is for New Zealand citizens or New Zealand permanent residents (PR) living in either Australia or New Zealand, who would like to apply for a mortgage to invest in real estate in Australia.

The property must be in Australia so we cannot help you with buying a house in New Zealand from Australia.

Can I borrow in Australia?

The amount that you can borrow and the banks that will lend to you will vary depending on your situation:

  • Living in Australia: New Zealand citizens living in Australia can borrow up to 95% of the property value.
  • Non-NZ citizens living in Australia: Non-New Zealanders on a 461 visa can borrow up to 95% of the property value. Read more in the section below.
  • Living in NZ: Some lenders will allow you to borrow up to 90% of the property value.
  • Living in another country: You may be treated as a foreign investor and have your loan limited to 60% to 80% of the property value.
  • Mortgage discount packages: One of our lenders can offer NZ citizens and NZ permanent residents the same professional package discounts that are available to Australian citizens.

Please call us on 1300 889 743 (+61 2 9194 1700 if overseas) or complete our free assessment form to discover if you qualify for a New Zealand citizen home loan.

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Do I qualify for a 461 visa home loan?

The New Zealand Citizen Family Relationship (Temporary) visa (subclass 461) allows non-New Zealanders to live and work in Australia for up to 5 years.

To qualify, you must be a part of the ‘family unit’ of a New Zealand citizen living and working in Australia on a temporary Special Category visa (subclass 444).

Alternatively, they could be travelling with you to Australia and will be granted a 444 visa on arrival.

Bear in mind, the bank will want you to be fully approved for the 461 visa when you apply for your home loan.

What does a ‘family member’ mean?

You could be related to the 444 visa holder in the follow ways:

  • Married or in a de facto relationship.
  • The child or step-child of either the NZ citizen or their partner.

This is one of the only ways that a foreign citizen can borrow up to 95% of the property value!


Will I pay a higher interest rate as an NZ citizen?

Some lenders charge a higher interest rate if you are not an Australian citizen.

This is particularly true if you are living in NZ or another country outside of Australia.

However, in most cases, we can get you the same interest rates as an Australian citizen, even if you are borrowing 95% of the property value!

Please call us on +61 2 9194 1700 from overseas, on 1300 889 743 from within Australia or complete our free assessment form and one of our specialist mortgage brokers will call you to discuss your options.


Is Australian government approval required?

No, Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) approval is not required for those with New Zealand citizenship who have been to Australia at least once.

This is because on arrival in Australia you are granted a Subclass 444 visa which means you are an Australian permanent resident.

So investing in Australian property from NZ is possible!

New Zealand permanent residents (i.e. not an Australian or NZ citizen) require FIRB approval as they do not have the ability to live in Australia permanently.

Why are so many NZ citizens investing in Australia?

In October 2016, the Reserve Bank of New Zealand put a ‘speed limit’ on their banks that has reduced the number of loans they can approve for investors who have less than a 40% of the purchase price as a deposit.

As a result, NZ property investors have increasingly turned to Australia because they can still buy a property with a small deposit.


What is the Non-Resident Withholding Tax (NRWT)?

If you’re living in NZ and paying interest to someone that lives outside of NZ then you may be liable to pay additional taxes.

This is a complex issue that you should discuss with your accountant.

For the purposes of investing in Australian property you either have to choose a lender who meets certain criteria so that you don’t have to pay the tax or be forced to pay the tax yourself.

If you had an interest rate of 4.00%, you’d effectively be paying 4.40% because of the tax.

In some cases, we can choose a lender that allows you to buy with a small deposit.

We can then refinance in 2-3 years time with a lender that meets the criteria so you can avoid paying the additional tax.


Can you avoid the stamp duty surcharge?

In 2016, the Government introduced a stamp duty surcharge or FPAD (foreign purchase additional duty) for foreigners that want to buy property in Australia.

When New Zealand citizens arrive in Australia, they are automatically granted a special visa known as a Special Category Visa (Subclass 444).

This visa exempts you from having to pay the stamp duty surcharge which applies in NSW, VIC and QLD but be careful!

In New South Wales, you need to be in the country for at least 200 days to be eligible to avoid the stamp duty surcharge.

For all three states, the visa expires if you’re outside of Australia when the Department of Immigration and Border Protection completes a Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) check.

To avoid the stamp duty surcharge, it’s important that you’re in the country at the time of settlement and contract signing.

If you can’t be in Australia at the time of settlement, you may still be able to avoid the FPAD buying purchasing in a state that doesn’t apply the surcharge:

  • Tasmania
  • Northern Territory
  • South Australia
  • Western Australia

Are new zealand citizens eligible for the First Home Owners Grant and other waivers?

The Australian government’s First Home Owners Grant (FHOG) and other benefits are available to permanent residents, as if they are citizens of Australia.

The Australian Department of Immigration automatically grants New Zealanders living in Australia a Special Category Visa (SCV).

Because New Zealand citizens are considered – for all intents and purposes – to be permanent residents of Australia, they are eligible for the grant.

Again, in NSW, you need to be living in the country for at least 200 days before you can buy a property and, therefore, apply for the FHOG.

You can even potentially avoid stamp duty or at least qualify for stamp duty concessions if you can meet the following criteria:

  • You’re a first home buyer.
  • You’re buying a property to live in in NSW not to invest.
  • The property you’re buying is worth $800,000 or less.
  • You signed the contract after 1 July 2017.
  • You’re a permanent resident or a 444 visa holder that has been living in the country for at least 200 days at the time of exchanging contracts.
  • You must be in the country at the time of contract exchange and at the time of settlement.

Try the stamp duty calculator work out how much you could save.

We also recommend you check the NSW OSR website to stay up-to-date on further policy changes.

Please refer to your mortgage broker for information about which benefits are available in your state.

Do you need help with an Australian mortgage?

Please call us on +61 2 9194 1700 from overseas or on 1300 889 743 from within Australia.

Alternatively, complete our free assessment form and one of our Australian mortgage brokers will call you to discuss your situation.


Can I use equity in a property in NZ to buy in Australia?

It’s possible to borrow in New Zealand against a property that you own there and then use those funds as a deposit to buy a property in Australia.

  • You can borrow up to 60% of the value of a NZ investment property.
  • You can borrow up to 80% of the value of a NZ home, if you’re living in NZ.
  • Borrowing more may be possible with specialist lenders at slightly higher interest rates.
  • Please contact a mortgage broker in NZ to help you release equity.

To be clear, using equity in a NZ property will involve to separate home loans.

One is a refinance of your mortgage in NZ where you release equity and the other is a home loan in Australia to buy a property using the equity from your NZ property.

Once you’ve released the equity in your NZ property, you can contact us and we’ll help you to get approved for the remainder of the funds in Australia.

At the moment, the Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) is limiting the amount they will allow banks to lend for investment due the rapid growth of the NZ real estate market.

This legislation may change in the future in which case you’ll be able to borrow at higher LVR.


Can I buy a home or investment property?

Your loan can be used for any kind of residential housing. This includes both a home to live in or an investment property in Australia.

You can also apply for a home loan to refinance your existing loan, release equity or build a property in Australia. Commercial mortgages are available on a case by case basis.

Am I required to buy a new property?

Other foreign citizens are required to buy a new property to comply with Australian legislation.

However, NZ citizens are allowed to buy vacant land and existing properties as well.


Which banks have the most competitive home loans?

Before you look at which lenders have the most competitive interest rates, you need to consider which can actually approve your mortgage!

There isn’t much point in applying if you’re only going to have your application declined and damage your credit file.

In particular, if you’re living in NZ or are borrowing over 80% of the purchase price of your property, then not every lender will approve your home loan.

For this reason we use different methodology to find you the right lender.

We know which banks have flexible lending criteria for NZ citizen customers.

This means that you may qualify for a home loan from a reputable bank and will not need to apply with specialist or non-conforming lenders.

Why do special rules apply for NZ citizens?

Some Australian banks view New Zealand citizens more favourably because our governments have joint agreements for trade, residency and legal purposes.

In addition to this, our countries share the same credit reporting system known as VedaScore via Veda Advantage.

For these reasons several banks see NZ citizens as low risk borrowers, even when compared to UK or USA citizens.


What if I’m waiting to become an Australian citizen?

That’s great but it’s not a requirement to qualify for a home loan in Australia.

However, getting your Australian citizenship allows you to access certain social security payments that a SCV holder or permanent resident couldn’t.

You’ll also be in position to sponsor family members in New Zealand for permanent residence.

The good news is that if you were present in Australia on 26 February 2001 as the holder of an SCV, you’ll be eligible to apply for Australian citizenship.

What if I am a NZ Permanent Resident?

This is more complicated as fewer banks will accept your application.

It will also depend on which country you are living in at the time of application. Please contact us to discuss your situation.


What documents will I need to provide?

To find you the best lender for your situation we’ll need to obtain the full details of your situation, including supporting documents such as bank statements, payslips and identification.

We can then work out which lenders will approve your home loan, and let you choose the most suitable mortgage out of those available from these banks.

Apply for an Australian mortgage!

We are mortgage brokers who specialise NZ citizen home loans.

We know which banks can accept your application and which offer the best interest rates for non-residents.

If you would like to buy a property in Australia, please call us on +61 2 9194 1700 if you’re overseas or on 1300 889 743 if you’re in Australia.

Better yet, you can complete our free assessment form wherever you are in the world and one of our specialist brokers will get back you.

  • eddy de weerd

    Hello I am looking at buying an
    apartment in Queensland. I have NZ permanent residency. I have been in NZ for 18 years. Would I be able to borrow money at my NZ bank (BNZ) or be easier to borrow in Australia. I don’t need to borrow full amount only about half I am thinking of. From Eddy

  • Hi Eddy,
    You’d need to borrow from an Australian lender. NZ lenders can’t assist with loans in Aus.
    From the Australian government point of view you’d be a foreign investor (not a PR of Australia) as you are not a NZ citizen. Because of this the QLD government would charge you higher stamp duty (3% higher as of today) https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/non-resident-mortgages/foreign-citizen-stamp-duty/ and you’d need to get FIRB approval https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/non-resident-mortgages/firb-approval/ which would cost $5,000 and you’d need to buy a new property.
    If the property is purely for investment purposes, i.e. you don’t plan to move to QLD in the future, then you may consider investing somewhere like Perth instead which doesn’t have the additional duty for foreign investors and has recently has a slump in their property market so may be better value.
    We specialise in lending to residents of NZ, if you’d like our help then please contact us here https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/free-quote/

  • Micky Magaz

    Hello
    I need to know if I am able to get home loan in Sydney – I’m nz citizen working in Sydney now and my wife will be on 461 visa when she comes here ?

  • Hi Micky
    Yes we can help you with this and you should qualify based on you being an NZ citizen and her on a 461 visa. It’s best if you call us on 1300 889 743 and organise an appointment to come into our head office in Rhodes to go through it in detail.

  • Hatepompouspeople

    Hi there,

    My wife and I are NZ Citizens and are planning on moving to Queensland in January next year. I have recently bought a NZ company and plan to bring the business with me (and register a new Australian company). My wife will work for the company as an employee when we arrive there. Is it possible to obtain a mortgage based on her employment contract despite it being a new company owned by me? We have a sizeable deposit (approx. 50%).

    Many thanks

  • Hi HPP
    Thanks for posting. What type of business / industry are you in? Is your wife working for the business in NZ as well?
    In most cases as you have such a large deposit I’d recommend that we just organise a low doc loan https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/low-doc-loans/
    You should still qualify for a low rate. It’s best if you can set up the Australian ABN now to prevent delays later on.

  • Hatepompouspeople

    Hi Again

    Many thanks. I supply Disaster/Survival kits in case of floods, earthquakes, cyclones, etc. My wife starts with the NZ company in July this year.

    I have just registered the company in Australia as a foreign entity and am waiting for the ABN (should be this week).

    Is age a barrier to this loan type (we are both 50)? What is the typical interest rate?

    Thanks again

  • Hi
    Age is something we need to address by explaining how you’ll pay off the loan at or before retirement.
    The interest rate would vary depending on a variety of things, but likely approx 5% as a low doc loan. After your business has been trading in Australia for 2 years then we can refinance to around 4.3%

  • Ernie

    I am a New Zealander living in NZ and I want to borrow 70% (500k home loan) to buy an investment property in NSW. I am self employed earning NZ$170k.

  • Hey Ernie,

    This can be done and we have a few lenders in mind that may be able to lend but some may require you to reduce your borrowing to 65% of the property value. Please call our overseas number +61 2 9194 1700 to discuss your situation and loan needs with an expert overseas mortgage specialist. Or you can simply enquire online:
    https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/free-quote/

  • CHK

    My husband and I are moving to Queensland next month. I would like to buy a home as soon as possible to avoid dead money being spent on rent. He is an American citizen. I am a dual New Zealand/American citizen. He is entering Oz on the New Zealand Family visa (467?). He’s not walking into a job but considering his field I dont expect that to take long. How long, reasonably, would he need to be working before we can apply for a home loan?

  • Hi CHK,
    Most banks require applicants to be in their current position for a minimum of 6 to 12 months to borrow 80% of the property value. However, one of our lenders can allow you to borrow even if your husband has just started a new job. You can find out more about this on the new job home loan page:
    https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/unusual-employment-loans/new-job-home-loan/

  • Joe

    I completed your free assessment form 4 days ago and yesterday. It says I have been sent an email and that someone will contact me within 24 hours. However, I did not receive any email nor any call from your office?

  • Hatepompouspeople

    Hi again

    Is it possible to have an offset mortgage which is also a low doc loan? We are cash rich but no proof of income in Australia when we arrive in December?
    Thx

  • Hi HPP welcome back
    Some low doc lenders have offset accounts however I’d say your loan would be with a specialist lender due to the unique income evidence you would provide (e.g. business plans, cash flow projections etc). Specialist lenders don’t normally have offset accounts however they do have the ability for you to make extra repayments and redraw those payments which means that you can achieve a similar result.

  • bona pombiyatyoka

    I hold new Zealand citizenship and of African descent . I have U$200 000 deposit and would like to pay it down as deposit for a dairy farm . Is it possible

  • Hi Bona,
    Potentially this is possible. For a farm you would need a large deposit. Typically 40% of the property value. So $200,000 may not be enough depending on the value of the farm.
    Whereas a hobby farm would be much easier, i.e. one that is more for lifestyle purposes rather than a commercial operation.

  • Jasmine

    Hi i arrived in australia sept 1999 from nz i purchased our home in 2007 i would like to sell our home and purchase a new home im being told that this may not be possible due to my visa category 444 and not being an australian citizen…im confused as there has been so many changes…what id like to know is if i sold our home would it be a nightmare with my visa status to buy into the market again? This home is not for investment but id be residing in the home with my family

  • Hi Jasmine
    We can assist you on a 444 visa that won’t be a problem. It shouldn’t be a problem and should not affect your decision to sell or buy a new home. Please be aware that you are likely not eligible for any grants when you buy your next home as you have already owned a home.

  • Jasmine

    Thank you for that information

  • Hi Robert,
    Yes this may be possible, but it is a little tricky.
    Normally if you live overseas and are buying an owner occupied property in Australia then your loan is declined as you’re moving away from your job. However your income will be unaffected by your move. Also we can show that you have sufficient assets to repay the loan in full if your income was to stop.
    Foreign superannuation and interest is sometimes accepted by banks and sometimes not, the evidence that you could provide would be very important.
    Please note that small apartments have lending restrictions. If the property has <50m2 living area (excluding balconies and car spaces) then less lenders will accept it. If it's <40m2 then again even fewer will. I'd strongly recommend that you have a cooling off period of 10 working day and a 8 week settlement period as this allows for delays and a bit of going back and forth with approving a loan.

  • Robert White

    Thanks for that, I will have a look at some apartments when I’m back in Melbourne in November and take it from there, will be in touch if it looks good, Cheers!

  • Darren M

    Hi Robert
    We sell off the plan properties including apartments & townhouses.
    Cheers
    Darren

  • H Singh

    Hi, i am NZ Citizen i have moved permanently to Australia earlier this month and started my job last week.

    I want to buy my first home in Melbourne my earnings forthrightly is $1900.

    Just want to know after how long i can apply for mortgage. what will be the highest i can barrow and if i’ll be eligible for grant?

  • Hi
    You can apply for a home loan now. You can borrow up to 95% of the property value plus LMI.
    You are likely to be eligible for a grant.
    Some rules may apply re living in the country for 200 days before being allowed to avoid the foreign citizen stamp duty. It’s best to call the VIC OSR to confirm if you would need to pay higher stamp duty or not.

  • Jo

    Hi, I live in NZ and would love to purchase an apartment style property in Australia, preferably the Gold Coast. My fortnightly earnings after tax are approximately NZD $2500. I own a home in NZ already.

    What would be a process for me to purchase on Australia?

  • Hi Jo,
    Getting a loan should be ok as long as you can afford it. You can borrow up to 85% of the property value. However there may be taxes for you buying, in particular the foreign citizen stamp duty. The rules around this are complex so I recommend that you call the QLD OSR to clarify it on +61 7 3227 6044. As a NZ citizen if you visit Australia you receive a special category 444 visa (Permanent Resident) on arrival. This may help you to avoid the tax, or may not. It’s best to call the OSR to be sure as the tax is large enough that it may affect your decision to buy or not.

  • Bimbola Christian

    Can i use my NZ Kiwisaver to buy my first home in QLD Australia?

  • Hi Bimbola,
    You’d need to research this in NZ as we’re not experts in NZ legislation. However from what I can tell no you cannot use it. You’d need to transfer it into an Australian superannuation account if you have left NZ permanently. http://www.kiwisaver.govt.nz/already/get-money/early/moving/

  • power

    I want to buy a property in Australia and I have equity in my property in NZ to purchase it. I want to know if I can buy the property with the equity in my New Zealand property.

  • Yes power, you can use the equity in your house in NZ to buy a property in Australia but what you need to understand is that it involves two separate home loans.
    First, you need to refinance your mortgage in NZ to release your equity. The other home loan will be with an Australian bank or lender to buy a property using the equity from your NZ property as a deposit.
    Unfortunately, we cannot assist you in refinancing a property located in New Zealand but we can assist you in buying a property in Australia once you’ve release the funds for your deposit. Keep in mind, these funds will be subject to foreign currency exchange.

  • Kath

    Hi there. I am a kiwi married to an Aussie (for 14 years) and spend a lot of time in Queensland. We live full time in NZ.
    We are in Aus at the moment and went today to a Real Estate to ask about buying a property here (for a holiday home). We were told I can’t buy already established property as i’m not a resident in Australia, our only option is to buy a new build, or for my husband to buy in his name only. I was also told I would not be able to get a mortgage here as again not a resident but this appears to not be true at all based on your info. Now we are totally confused! We have equity in property in NZ and are business owners with decent income. How do we find out the correct info?

  • Hi Kath
    There’s a few queries here so I’ll answer them one by one.
    Yes we can assist self employed people living in NZ for a mortgage. Both Aus citizens and NZ citizens are acceptable for lending purposes.
    Potentially you can buy in your husband’s name with both of you on the loan. That way both incomes can be used and you can avoid government rules.
    If you’re in Australia at the time of signing the contract then you’re a permanent resident on a special category 444 visa and so you would not require FIRB approval and would not pay the QLD Additional Foreign Acquirer Duty (AFAD). In other words book a holiday to buy a property!
    I can’t stress enough that you should seek advice from a conveyancer before proceeding just to make sure that what I’ve stated above is correct. We do a lot of loans for residents of NZ and so we’re experienced in this area however lending is our specialty not tax advice. You can call the QLD OSR on +61 7 3227 6044 to check with them as well.
    Also note that you can avoid the Non-Resident Withholding Tax in NZ if you use the right lender as well. Again speak to a NZ accountant for advice on this.
    Overall I think as long as your tax returns show a good income we should be fine. I’ll email you and cc one of our mortgage brokers who specialises in NZ citizen home loans.

  • Brenda

    My husband and I live in New Zealand but are thinking of retiring to the Gold Coast. We do not need a mortgage to buy a property and wanted to know if we would have to pay the Foreign Buyers Tax and would we be entitled to the first home benefits. Thanks

  • Hi Brenda
    If you move there before you buy then you should avoid the tax and be eligible for first home benefits. I’d recommend that you contact the QLD OSR to be sure +61 7 3227 6044

  • Karen Daniel

    Is it possible to transfer kiwisaver funds to an Australian super account and use this to buy a first home in Australia (Queensland)?. This is while living Australia for the past 6 months?

  • Hi Karen
    This may be possible however it’s outside of our area of expertise. You’d need to check with an expert in NZ to be sure of this.

  • Tamara Bonamy

    Hi,
    If you live in nz and own an investment property can you claim travel expenses from nz to australia?
    Thanks

  • Hi Tamara
    Under Australian tax rules you are allowed to tax deduct visits to investment properties in some circumstances. Given there are two countries involved I’m not sure exactly how this would work. It’s best to talk to an accountant.

  • erica

    Hello,
    This is to inform the general public that Mrs Morgan Erica, a private loan lender has open up a financial opportunity for everyone in need of any financial help. We give out loan at 2% interest rate to individuals, firms and companies under a clear and understandable terms and condition. contact us today by e-mail so that we can give you our loan terms and conditions at: (morganerica007@gmail.com)

  • Dillon

    Hi there,

    I am looking to move to Sydney in January and my partner already moved in September. I would like to look into buying a house ASAP but am wary of the stamp duty surcharge. If we were to go joint on a mortgage would the 200 days apply from when my partner moved to Sydney or when I do?

    Also I already have property here in NZ, would I still count as a first home buyer in Australia as technically it will be our first home?

    Thanks

  • Hi Dillion,
    Yes, New South Wales (NSW) state office clearly states that in order to buy a property and obtain first home grant, you need to be in the country for at least 200 days. If there is one partner doing that, then you can buy a property but you need to check with a solicitor.
    Since you’re buying a property for the first time in Australia, you may be eligible for the first home grant. You may call us on 1300 889 743 (+61 2 9194 1700 if you’re overseas) or enquire online https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/free-quote/ to know more about an NZ citizen home loan.

  • Ida

    Hi, are we classified as first home buyers in Australia if we’ve bought a house in NZ but not in Australia?
    We’re NZ born and thinking of moving to Australia.

  • Hi Ida,
    Yes, you will be classified as first home buyers if you’ve not purchased a property in Australia. Different states have different FHOG eligibility criteria so I find it best to refer to the state’s Office of State Revenue (OSR) website to confirm.

  • Pamela

    Hello.
    I’ll be moving to Australia in 6 months and I’ll be transferring my Kiwisaver account from NZ to super. Can I use it as deposit to buy my first home?

  • Hi Pamela,
    Unfortunately, you can’t. Superannuation funds can’t be withdrawn to buy a first home in Australia. However, if you’re making contributions (salary sacrificing) towards the First Home Super Saver Scheme (FHSSS), you can withdraw those savings to use as the deposit. You will need to meet certain requirements, please check our FHSS page to get more information here: https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/genuine-savings/first-home-super-saver-scheme/

  • Eric

    Hi
    Can I use the equity From my property in NZ to buy a property in Australia? And if so how does it work?

  • Karlos

    Hi, my wife and I are both New Zealand citizens and will be moving to Melbourne in four weeks time. We have 200k AUD ready for a deposit. Seeing as we’re both in our early 50s, will we have trouble getting approved for a mortgage?

  • Hi Karlos,

    Lenders would want to see a contract of employment before approving a mortgage. There is no specific age restriction however, lenders may want an exit strategy. You can learn more about exit strategy here: https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/home-loan-articles/exit-strategy-in-mortgages/ So, once you start employment in Australia, and have at least 2 payslips you should be able to get approved for a mortgage.

  • Bibi

    Hi, Kiwi here living in Auckland. I’m looking to buy a 400 hectare vacant block in Australia with the plan to eventually move to Australia and start an organic farm. Will I need special permission from the government to buy land there? How much of the percentage of the property will the banks lend me?

  • Hi Bibi,
    NZ citizens don’t need special permission (FIRB approval) from the Australian Government to buy land here. However, for a land size this big (400 hectares), not many lenders will accept this kind of security. There may be a few lenders who can finance up to 60% of the property for land that you intend to use for commercial farming.

  • Hi Eric,

    Depending on how much available equity you have in your property in New Zealand and your bank’s lending policies, you can certainly cash out a deposit to purchase a property in Australia.
    To be clear, you can’t cross-securitise your NZ home loan to purchase Australian security (property).
    Some other things to consider…
    Although you don’t need Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) approval, you may be hit with the foreigner stamp duty surcharge if you don’t meet specific rules for the Australian state you plan on buying in.
    We recommend that you speak with your mortgage broker in New Zealand and then seek legal advice from a solicitor that can explain the rules and complete costs of purchasing property in Australia.

  • Patrickk

    Hello,
    We are New Zealand citizens currently living in Auckland. I’m planning on purchasing an investment property around NSW this year. I heard that foreigners have to first receive a government sanctioned approval in order to get their loan approved. Can you tell me if this applies to New Zealanders as well?

  • New Zealand citizens and Permanent Residents living in NZ or Australia are eligible to take out a home loan that they can use to invest in Australian real-estate. Although some lenders charge a higher interest rate to foreign nationals, we have a lender that can offer NZ citizens the same interest rates as an Australian citizen.
    If you’re moving to Australia, you might actually be eligible to borrow up to 95% of the property value. However, depending on the state you’re moving to, you will need to be in the country for at least 200 days to be eligible to avoid the foreigner stamp duty surcharge.

  • Ane Seeling Wilson

    Hello

    We are NZ citizens living in QLD for over 18 months but our income is from our NZ company. Are we able to apply for mortgage? If yes, what % of the loan amount to we would be able to borrow?
    We want to purchase in the sunshine Coast.
    Thanks

  • Hi Ane,
    As NZ citizens living in Australia many of our lenders assess you the same way they do Australians, as such you may be able to borrow up to 95% of the property value. However, all foreign incomes are considered on a case by case basis. To allow for exchange rate movements, some lenders will only use 60% to 90% of your foreign income. This can severely limit your borrowing power. Our best lenders will actually use 100% of your foreign income as long as you’re in a strong financial position and can provide income documents to support that. The lending policy for borrowing with foreign currency is really complex, even though, the New Zealand Dollar (NZD) is a preferred currency with most of our lenders. The key is to apply with the right lender. You can find more information on foreign income home loans here:https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/non-resident-mortgages/foreign-income-home-loan/ or you can fill in our online assessment form: https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/free-quote/ to discuss your situation directly with one of our specialist mortgage brokers.

  • Nia

    Hi, I’m planning to move to Aus (Sydney) from Auckland, NZ and checking to see if I can get a mortgage to buy a property once I get there?

  • Hi Nia,
    Yes, New Zealand citizens living in Australia can borrow up to 95% of the property value. Australian lenders would want to see an employment contract to verify your employment situation. Some lenders may also require payslips to verify your income. The good news is if you’ve never owned a property in Australia before you may even be eligible for the first home owners grant and stamp duty concessions.

  • Griffen

    Hi,
    I’m an NZ citizen looking to invest in real estate in Australia. This is the first time I’m hearing of the Non-resident Withholding Tax? Is this payable to the Australian government or the NZ government?

  • Hi Griffen,

    There are tax issues you need to consider when borrowing money in Australia as a non-resident New Zealand citizen. Generally, if you’re living in NZ and paying interest to someone that lives outside of NZ then you may be liable to pay an additional tax called the Non-Resident Withholding Tax (NRWT). It is payable to the New Zealand IRD at 10 per cent of the interest that’s paid on foreign debts. For example, if you had an interest rate of 4.00%, you’d effectively be paying 4.40% because of the tax.

    If a NZ investor chooses a bank in Australia that is a registered bank in New Zealand, like for example ANZ, they are exempt from NRWT or if the lender meets certain criteria so that you don’t have to pay the tax or be forced to pay the tax yourself.

    This is a simplified explanation of a complex issue that you should discuss with your accountant before proceeding.

  • Lyle

    Hi, I’m a NZ citizen and work primarily between Taiwan and Australia. I’ll be constantly flying in and out of Australia in the next 12 months. As I’m looking to buy a property in NSW, could the 200 days be spread across multiple visits to avoid the foreigner stamp duty surcharge?

  • Hi Lyle,
    Yes, in NSW specifically, the 200 days can be spread across multiple visits to avoid paying the foreign stamp duty surcharge. However, it is best to confirm with the State Revenue Office directly.

  • Amy

    Hi there,
    My partner and I are first home buyers looking at the idea of buying a property in Aus in a year or two. I am a NZ Citizen but my partner is a NZ permanent resident. Would it be harder for us to get approved for a home loan because he isn’t a NZ Citizen?

  • Hi Amy,

    Not necessarily. NZ citizens living and working in Australia who are looking to buy a property with their partner who’s a NZ permanent resident can still borrow up to 95% of the property value. NZ citizens are treated the same as AU citizens by a number of major lenders. Some lenders may limit the loan to value ratio to 70%. In a scenario where one of the joint borrowers holds a 461 visa and the other, a 444 visa, some lenders will focus their approval decision on the 461 visa. Apart from the LVR, you’re assessed the same way as an Australian citizen and qualify for the same rates. The key is to apply with the right lender.

  • Jorge

    Hello,
    Most blogs or articles I have read only cover kiwis living in NZ or Australia, but not elsewhere.
    I am a Nz citizen, currently living in Singapore. I was wondering:
    1) am I eligible to buy an apartment/landed property from the 2nd hand market in Melbourne? Or do I have to buy off the plans like other foreigners? This will be for investment purposes (I do not need a loan) and I will not be living in NZ or Australia in the foreseeable future.
    2) what stamp duty am I looking at on buying a property in Melbourne based on the circumstances above? 5% + 8 % foreigner tax?
    Thanks!

  • Hello Jorge,
    New Zealand citizens living overseas are seen as having no real ties to Australia. So, there are only some lenders that will consider your lending up to 80% of the property value on a case by case basis. You’d need to be residing in one of the countries listed above.
    1. Yes, even though non-residents foreigners are generally prohibited from purchasing established dwellings in Australia. NZ citizens are exempted from this.
    2. Stamp duty differs from state to state. For Victoria, the stamp duty surcharge is 8%. Please note that VIC also has a land tax of 1.5% p.a.