Living Costs

Whether you rent or own your own home you need to make sure that your living arrangements are within your budget. Deciding where you should live is a difficult decision to make and not one that should be taken lightly. However, downsizing your living may be a way to get your budget into shape. 

If you feel that your current home is right for you, but are still struggling to pay the rent or the mortgage you may be eligible for government support. 

In particular, you may want to find out more about the Accommodation Supplement available from WINZ. For more information see: http://www.workandincome.govt.nz/individuals/a-z-benefits/accommodation-supplement.html  

There is also special assistance that is available to kaumātua.  

This includes The Living Alone Payment which is a payment for people living alone who are getting New Zealand Superannuation or Veteran’s Pension. It helps with those extra costs of running a household alone. For more information see: http://www.workandincome.govt.nz/individuals/a-z-benefits/living-alone-payment.html 

Residential Care subsidy

Paying for residential care can be expensive and costly for the whānau if they need to help out. If you need long-term residential care in a hospital or rest home, you may be able to get a Residential Care Subsidy from the Ministry of Health. This subsidy helps with the cost of this care. The subsidy is paid directly to the hospital or rest home by the Ministry of Health. For more information see: http://www.workandincome.govt.nz/individuals/a-z-benefits/residential-care-subsidy.html



Tips for Renters

Renters should keep an eye on the market and make sure that they are getting good value for money.  

Be the best tenant you can be so that your landlord wants to keep you and is reluctant to prompt you to move by putting up the rent. This is also important so that you get a good reference for future landlords.  

It's really important that you know your rights as a tenant. For more advice on tenancy agreements visit the community law centre link: http://www.communitylaw.org.nz/Tenancies.36.0.html 

Have a clear agreement with your landlord on what each party is responsible for and both parties expectations. 



Tips for Home Owners

Make the most of lowering mortgage interest rates

Mortgage interest rates have dropped significantly over the last few years. The great thing about this is if your mortgage is nearing the end of its fixed rate or you are on a floating rate you may be able to save a lot on the interest you are currently paying. 

Say you have a $200,000 mortgage being paid on a 25 years term at an interest rate of 9.0%. 

If you can re-fix that same loan at 6.0%, and keep your monthly payments the same,you will save $96,113 in interest over the course of your mortgage and will pay it off in just over 15 years. 

Alternatively, if you are really struggling to meet your mortgage payments at your current high interest rate, taking the above scenario if you are able to re-fix at the lower rate, you could drop your monthly payments from $1678.39 per month to $1288.60 giving you an extra $389.79 to help make ends meet.