Who can join KiwiSaver?
Most New Zealanders can join KiwiSaver even if you are not working. You must be living or normally living in New Zealand and be a New Zealand citizen (or entitled to permanent residence).
Are there any Government incentives to be gained by enrolling in KiwiSaver?
Yes there is! For every $1 you save into your KiwiSaver account, the Government will contribute $0.50, up to $521.43 each KiwiSaver year — provided that you are 18 or older, not yet entitled to withdraw for retirement and mainly living in New Zealand.
When can I access my KiwiSaver funds?
In most cases you can’t withdraw your savings until you’ve reached the age of 651. In some cases, like when buying your first home, you may be able to cash in some or all, of your investment early. The table below explains some of the withdrawal options.
You can also access your savings where any Act or court order requires a withdrawal.
How easy is it to change KiwiSaver provider?
Changing providers is really easy. Just complete our application form and return it with the relevant proof of identity and residential address. We then update Inland Revenue and your ongoing contributions will be immediately redirected to us. We then contact your current provider and arrange for the funds they have to be transferred to us. They have 10 working days to pass the funds to us once we have sent them a request. We do not charge a fee for our transfer service (you may wish to check if your current KiwiSaver provider charges an exit fee) and basically once you've sent the application form to us we take care of the rest on your behalf — easy!
Likewise, if you wanted to transfer from the Fisher Funds KiwiSaver Scheme you would just complete the form for another provider. Before you did this we would encourage you to give us a call so we can discuss your account and situation in more detail.
Is there a minimum contribution to join KiwiSaver?
There is no minimum initial investment and the Scheme does not have a minimum ongoing annual contribution, unless you are employed in which case the minimum contribution is 3% of your gross salary or wages.
How is my employer notified to make KiwiSaver deductions for me?
If you were not automatically enrolled into KiwiSaver by your employer then once we have received and processed your application form we will forward these details to Inland Revenue. Inland Revenue will then send your employer a letter advising that you have joined a KiwiSaver scheme and to begin making deductions, if not already doing so.
This notification process may take some time so to avoid any potential delays we recommend that you advise your employer you have joined KiwiSaver, how much you want to contribute and when you want your contributions to commence.
Can I enrol my children in KiwiSaver?
While under 18’s are eligible to join KiwiSaver, without the kick-start, Government contribution or compulsory employer contributions, in our view people should not sign children up to KiwiSaver.
Read more about our view »
Do I need to supply an IRD number on my child's KiwiSaver application?
Yes, an IRD number is mandatory. Download an IRD number application form here if required.
How are my savings in the Fisher Funds KiwiSaver Scheme governed?
Our KiwiSaver Scheme is governed by a Governing Document and is overseen by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and the Financial Markets Authority. This means our Scheme has met certain minimum ongoing requirements. We also provide detailed disclosure information to help people understand what they are investing in. Trustees Executors Limited is the supervisor of the Scheme. The supervisor is responsible for ensuring we comply with the Governing Document and other KiwiSaver rules. The supervisor holds the assets of the Scheme on your behalf. None of the Government, the supervisors or scheme providers guarantee any individual KiwiSaver scheme.
What information will I receive about my Fisher Funds KiwiSaver Scheme account?
We aim to keep you updated about the progress of your KiwiSaver account on a regular basis.
- The unit prices of the Funds within the Scheme are updated every business day on our website.
- We email a monthly newsletter to members updating them on Fund performance, the latest developments in KiwiSaver and educational tips.
- You will receive an annual statement and tax certificate in May each year summarising the activity and tax impact on your KiwiSaver account for the previous year.
- An Annual Report for the Scheme is sent in August each year.
- You can also view your account online at any time.
Can I access my account online?
Yes you can. To register for online access click here. If any of the details you enter does not match our system it will not let you proceed, if that happens give us a call on 0800 FFKIWI (0800 335494) and we'll sort you out. Once you are registered you are able to view the number of units you own and the value of these, drill down to each transaction on your account, update personal details and you can also print statements of your account for any period of time you specify.
What is the Government contribution?
We've got a page dedicated to the Government contribution (formerly known as member tax credits). Follow this link.
Can I transfer funds from another NZ super scheme into my KiwiSaver account?
Yes, you may be able to. As a first step we suggest contacting your super scheme provider to check that they do allow the transfer of funds to KiwiSaver accounts and also whether there are any other fish hooks about transferring early e.g. early withdrawal penalties. If you want to go ahead then simply complete our transfer form, send in to us and we'll organise the transfer into your KiwiSaver account.
How do I make KiwiSaver contributions?
How you contribute depends upon your situation. Click here for a full range of your contribution options.
How do I change my contribution rate?
If you are employed, you simply need to notify your employer that you wish to change your contribution rate. If you are not contributing from salary, the Fisher Funds KiwiSaver scheme has no minimum contribution rate, so you can set your own amount.
Can I contribute while I am overseas?
Yes you can, however, the Government will not match any contributions you make while you are not residing in NZ.
Can I take a break from saving?
Yes, after 12 months of membership you can take a savings suspension of between 3 months and one year. A savings suspension request form can be obtained here. Please note that Inland Revenue administers these.
On my pay slip I see KiwiSaver contributions deducted from my wages, where do these go?
After contributions are deducted from your wages, your employer forwards these on to Inland Revenue with their PAYE schedule.
Your contributions remain at Inland Revenue earning interest for a three month period before being forwarded onto the Fisher Funds KiwiSaver Scheme. The three month period begins on the date that Inland Revenue receive your contributions from your employer, not when the contributions are first deducted from your wages.
After three months, Inland Revenue processes your contributions and forwards them on to the Fisher Funds KiwiSaver Scheme. We then invest those contributions into the Investment Fund(s) that you have selected, the Balanced Fund if you haven't chosen a Fund or the Cash Enhanced Fund if you have been automatically enrolled.
Please note that it usually takes longer than three months before we receive your contributions through Inland Revenue due to when your employer submits their PAYE schedule and Inland Revenue processing times.
You are able to keep track of contributions paid to Inland Revenue (but not yet forwarded to Fisher Funds KiwiSaver Scheme) by visiting www.kiwisaver.govt.nz.
From time to time Inland Revenue experience delays with their processing. If you have contributions that have been delayed we suggest calling Inland Revenue on 0800 549 472 (0800 KIWISAVER), or 04 978 0800 if using a mobile.
Is it compulsory for my employer to make contributions to my KiwiSaver account? If so, how much is it?
Your employer is required to contribute to your Fisher Funds KiwiSaver Scheme account if:
- you're aged 18 or over but under 65 (subject to the minimum membership requirement outlined below); and
- you’re not on a savings suspension and are contributing; and
- you aren't having complying member contributions already deducted from your salary or wages in relation to a complying superannuation scheme, or certain other superannuation schemes.
Your employer must contribute a current minimum of 3% of what you earn, less Employer Superannuation Contribution Tax, to your Fisher Funds KiwiSaver Scheme account.
If you joined KiwiSaver (or a complying fund) before 1 July 2019, a 5 year minimum membership requirement applies if you were aged 60 or over when you joined. During the 5 year minimum membership period you are entitled to compulsory employer contributions if you are contributing from your wages or salary. Once you’ve reached the age of 65 you can opt out of this requirement, however if you do so you will forego your entitlement to compulsory employer contributions.
My contributions have been credited to my account, but my employer contributions haven't. Why is this?
Inland Revenue is required to transfer your member contributions deducted from salary or paid by your employer to the Fisher Funds KiwiSaver Scheme as they receive them (after the first three months). Employer contributions are not transferred until Inland Revenue has reconciled your employer's monthly schedule. If there are issues with the schedule, the employer contributions may be delayed.
What happens if I change jobs?
KiwiSaver is transferable. If you change jobs simply advise your new employer that you are already a member of a KiwiSaver scheme and they will commence making deductions from your pay packet.
What happens if I stop working?
If you stop working for any reason, your workplace KiwiSaver deductions will stop, but your KiwiSaver account will stay open.
You have the option to continue contributing to KiwiSaver on a voluntary basis — and if you want to receive the annual Government tax credit payment of $521.43, you will need to contribute at least $1,042.86 yourself.
If you don't want to keep contributing, you don't have to do anything.
Are KiwiSaver contributions deducted from redundancy pay-outs?
No they are not. The KiwiSaver Act specifically excludes redundancy pay-outs from the definition of Salary or Wages, so your redundancy pay-out will have no money deducted for KiwiSaver.
What are the fees for the Fisher Funds KiwiSaver Scheme?
You will be charged fees for investing in Fisher Funds KiwiSaver. Fees are deducted from your investment and will reduce your returns. If Fisher Funds invests in other funds, those funds may also charge fees. The fees you pay will be charged in two ways:
- regular charges (for example, annual fund charges). Small differences in these fees can have a big impact on your investment over the long term;
- one-off fees (for example, fees charged for investing or withdrawing from a fund or for other specific actions you take). Fisher Funds does not currently charge any one-off fees.
The annual fund charges below are based on the fees and expenses from the 31 March 2020 audited financial statements. They are a reasonable estimate of the annual fund charges that are likely to be charged in the future.
|Balanced Strategy (45% Conservative Fund, 55% Growth Fund)
0% — 1.10%
0% — 2.00%
|*Other charges: In addition to the annual fund charges above you will also be charged an account fee of $23.40 per annum
Can I apply for a first home withdrawal to buy an investment property?
Unfortunately you can't. You can only apply for a first home withdrawal if the property is intended to be your principal place of residence.
I already own some land. Can I apply for a first home withdrawal to build a house on it?
Unfortunately you can't. Owning land is treated the same as owning a house as far as KiwiSaver is concerned, so you won't be eligible to apply for a first home withdrawal.
I joined KiwiSaver two years ago and I'm about to buy a house. Can I apply for a first home withdrawal?
Unfortunately you can't. You need to be a KiwiSaver member for three years before you can apply for a first home withdrawal.
I own a house overseas. Can I apply for a first home withdrawal to buy a house in New Zealand?
Unfortunately you can't. Irrespective of where the house is, if you already own a home, you aren't eligible to apply for a first home withdrawal.
I already own a home. Can I use apply for a first home withdrawal to pay off my mortgage?
Unfortunately you can't. You can only apply for a first home withdrawal to be used towards the purchase price on your home prior to settlement date.
Can I withdraw my Australian Superannuation savings from my KiwiSaver account to use towards my first home?
Unfortunately you can't. Your Aussie Super savings are still bound by Australian legislation. You can only withdraw them when you satisfy the Australian definition of retirement.
Can I apply for a first home withdrawal to buy land?
Yes, you can. You can apply for a first home withdrawal to buy land provided that you intend to live on the property.
When will my KiwiSaver savings be paid out for a first home withdrawal?
For an unconditional sale and purchase agreement, funds will be paid to your Solicitor's trust account up to 5 working days prior to settlement date. For a conditional sale and purchase agreement, funds will be paid to your Solicitor's trust account as soon as we have reviewed your application and can process the withdrawal. Please note we require all documentation to be with us at least 10 working days before payment can be made. Read more about first home purchases here.
How long will a full withdrawal take to process?
Full withdrawals (such as a retirement withdrawal) will take around 2-3 weeks to process taking into account making a final Government contribution claim. Partial withdrawals not requiring a Government contribution claim should take around a week to process.
If your KiwiSaver account is closed immediately following eligibility, any employee or employer contributions received after the date of closure (due to the usual three month processing delay) will be paid directly by Inland Revenue to you. If you would prefer to receive one final payment from us you should wait three months (or more) for all of your employee and employer contributions to be received by us from Inland Revenue before making a final withdrawal and closing your account.
Can I keep contributing into my KiwiSaver account even when I am eligible to access my KiwiSaver savings?
Yes, you can. If you are working, your employer will continue to send your employee contributions to Inland Revenue who will in turn process and pass to Fisher Funds. If you are not working, payments can continue to be made by regular direct debit or automatic payment, or one-off lump sums via cheque or internet banking.
Will I still be entitled to receive employer contributions if I continue working beyond KiwiSaver retirement age?
Your employer is not legally required to keep making employer contributions once you turn 65. If you joined KiwiSaver (or a complying fund) before 1 July 2019, a 5 year minimum membership requirement applies if you were aged 60 or over when you joined. During the 5 year minimum membership period you are entitled to compulsory employer contributions if you are contributing from your wages or salary. We recommend for you to speak with your employer about this.
Once you’ve reached the age of 65 you can opt out of the 5 year minimum membership requirement, however if you do so you will forego your entitlement to compulsory employer contributions.
When am I eligible to withdraw savings transferred from an Australian Super or UK Pension provider?
Australian Super savings: Once your funds are transferred you can access them as long as you satisfy the Australian definition of retirement.
UK Pension savings: Once your funds are transferred they are subject to the rules of our KiwiSaver Scheme, including being able to access your funds at NZ Superannuation age or (if later) when completing five years membership.
If I close my KiwiSaver account after my KiwiSaver retirement age can I restart it at a later point?
Yes. If you close your KiwiSaver account or have closed one in the past, you can open a new KiwiSaver account so long as you’re living or normally living in New Zealand and a New Zealand citizen (or entitled to permanent residence). Read more about KiwiSaver & retirement here.
When can I make a KiwiSaver retirement withdrawal?
You are eligible to make a retirement withdrawal once you’ve reached the age of 65. If you joined KiwiSaver (or a complying fund) before 1 July 2019, a 5 year minimum membership requirement applies if you were aged 60 or over when you joined. During the 5 year minimum membership period you are entitled to the Government contribution and compulsory employer contributions if you are contributing from your wages or salary. Once you've reached the age of 65 you can opt out of this requirement and make a partial or full withdrawal, however if you do so you will forego your entitlement to the Government contribution and compulsory employer contributions.