KiwiSaver in a nutshell
KiwiSaver is a voluntary retirement savings scheme designed to help all New Zealanders save for their future. KiwiSaver is managed by the IRD with independent KiwiSaver providers running the savings schemes. At 31st March 2020, more than 3 million Kiwis had over $63 billion invested in KiwiSaver, estimated to grow to $200 billion by 2030.
Most members build up their savings through regular contributions from their pay. If you’re saving through your work, your employer must contribute too, with a minimum of 3% of your before-tax pay. Employers pay the employee deductions and employer contributions to the IRD with the rest of their payroll deductions like tax.
If you're not working, you can still have a KiwiSaver fund, and can make KiwiSaver contributions directly through a scheme provider.
There are 29 KiwiSaver scheme providers and over 270 different funds to choose from, to cater for everyone’s different needs. The KiwiSaver providers invest their members’ KiwiSaver funds to make a greater return on the savings for their retirement.
If you’re contributing to a KiwiSaver scheme the government will contribute 50 cents for every dollar you save, up to $521.43 each year. To get it all you must have contributed at least $1042.86 in the period 1 July to 30 June. Note, those under 18 are not eligible for the government contribution.
Whilst the main purpose of KiwiSaver is to help New Zealanders save for their retirement, members can also use KiwiSaver to contribute towards buying their first home.
If you can’t remember your current KiwiSaver fund , you can contact IRD on 0800 549472 or login to myIR.
You are free to choose which KiwiSaver fund you invest in. Your bank may recommend you invest in their KiwiSaver scheme, and your employer may recommend a scheme, but ultimately the decision is up to you, based on your individual needs and values. EXCEPTIONS - UniSaver, others? If you do not choose a scheme, the IRD will allocate you to one of their default schemes or to your employer's chosen scheme.
There is lots more information about KiwiSaver on the KiwiSaver website.