The Revamped Maori Home Loan Scheme

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Adam Gifford

Te Ahooterangi Pihama: The Revamped Maori Home Loan Scheme

Kiwibank upgraded its Kāinga Whenua loan program after considering whether it was suitable for the purpose of helping Maori people gain access to property.

Chief Maori adviser Te Ahooterangi Pihama said the bank had run the scheme for more than a decade in partnership with Kāinga Ora, the bank providing the pūtea and the Crown Land Agency providing security.

In the past, loans were only granted when someone held a whenua Māori occupation license issued by the Māori Land Court, which can be difficult to obtain.

“One of the many improvements we’ve made to the program is that we now accept leases, so when someone has part of the whenua put on perpetual lease, somewhere between 50 and 99, in whānau, a individual or a larger collective, to enable more of our whānau to rely on their whenua,” says Pihama.

Te Ahooterangi Pihama says the bank is now allowing loans on smaller homes, reducing the minimum from 70 to 50 square meters, and there is no deposit for small loans and only a 5% deposit for loans greater than $200,000.

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