Most popular questions
CareSaver KiwiSaver Scheme is a 100% ethical and research based KiwiSaver Scheme managed by Pathfinder Asset Management Limited. We have been investing ethically since 2009. We seek out companies that have the best environmental, social and governance (ESG) practices. Evidence shows that companies with the best ESG practices make better long-term investments. We also seek out companies that are engaged in activities that will help society move towards a more sustainable future. We actively avoid companies that, in our opinion, do harm to the environment and society.
When you sign up for CareSaver, you will be able to select a charity that you want to support. At the end of every year we take 20% of our Management Fee and donate this to the charity you’ve selected. Over the years this could be a significant amount and allow your chosen charity to continue their good work.
Anyone who resides in New Zealand, a permanent resident or citizen of New Zealand is eligible to join CareSaver.
We charge a membership fee of $2.25 per month, plus each fund has an annual Management Fee (Conservative Fund 0.80%, Balanced Fund 1.10%, Growth Fund 1.25%). For balances under $1,000, we waive the $2.25 per month membership fee.
Our Charity Partners have been carefully chosen by us in accordance with our Charity Partner Selection Principles, which we call our PRIME criteria:
- Purpose: We want to work with charities with a clear social or environmental purpose.
- Reach: We want to support charities who engage with an active community of supporters.
- Impact: We want to partner with charities who are making an important difference to improve lives, communities or our natural environment.
- Mana-Enhancement: We want to work with charities who prioritise integrity, care, transparency and innovation. These reflect Pathfinder’s values of Aware, Fair and Care.
We are always looking to work with charities that align with our PRIME criteria – charities can get in touch with us at hello@CareSaver.co.nz.
CareSaver has three funds – Conservative, Balanced and Growth. Each of these will have different returns. Which one you choose will depend on factors such as your age, your time horizon, and the purpose of the investment.
If you think you might use CareSaver to help buy your first home within the next three years, then you might find the Conservative portfolio best for your needs. Alternatively, if you have 10 or more years until retirement, and saving for your retirement is your main goal, then the Growth fund may be more suitable. You can use our calculator here to give you some guidance, or look at some of the information on the website www.sorted.org.nz.
All investment tools incur associated risk. Our Product Disclosure Statement outlines general investment risks, other specific risks, and a risk indicator for each Fund. To help clarify your own attitude to risk, you should seek independent financial advice. More information relating to risk associated with the Scheme is also available within the Other Material Information document and on the offer register; business.govt.nz/disclose.
You can check your balance online by logging into our Portal. Our online member Portal allows you to track your balance, see performance and make voluntary contributions. You will be sent instructions on how to access the Portal upon signup.
This will depend on which fund you choose, but in general terms each fund has a split between income and growth assets. Income assets include investments like bank deposits, bonds and other instruments that will usually pay a known interest rate. Growth assets are usually investments like company shares. The investments can either be in New Zealand, or anywhere in the world.
If you are employed, check on your payslip. Or you can phone the Inland Revenue
Department on 0800 775 247 and ask, “What is my IRD number?”
Joining CareSaver is easy and should take only a couple of minutes. You will need your IRD number and either a passport or driver’s license. You can join on our home page and/or by clicking here.
When we receive funds from your employer or directly from you, your CareSaver fund will be activated and you can log in to see it.
Yes, everyone who is living (or normally living) in New Zealand, and is a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident, can join. CareSaver is a great way of saving for their first home and to teach them the importance of saving along the way. If the child is under 16, the signature of all legal guardians must be given, and if the child is aged 16-17, the child must co-sign with one guardian. Your child will also need to have an IRD number. You can apply for one from Inland Revenue Department here. Click here for more information.
Yes, regardless of where you are in the world you can apply to transfer your existing KiwiSaver to CareSaver online, however you will not be eligible for the government’s contributions for the time you are out of NZ. There are some exceptions to this position, for example for state sector employees working overseas. We will first need to verify your identity and address before activating your account.
There is no upfront cost to join or transfer to CareSaver. The fees you pay when you join CareSaver KiwiSaver scheme are deducted from your investment. These are outlined in full in the Product Disclosure Statement and include our Management Fee and a $27 Administration Fee.
Contributions and Savings
That is entirely up to you, and you should consider your overall personal circumstances when you make this decision. It is important to remember that the goal of CareSaver is to provide retirement savings for you. The money you contribute will generally not be available to you until you reach age 65. However, there are specific circumstances in which you can access your savings early.
If you are employed, you must contribute a minimum of 3% of your gross salary or wage. After one year you can choose to stop contributing (i.e. go on a “savings suspension”). You can choose to increase the 3% to 4%, 6%, 8% or 10%, and to reduce it back to 3% whenever you choose.
Employees can also make extra contributions directly to their CareSaver. There are no restrictions on this. CareSaver lets each employee decide what they wish to do and when they wish to do it.
If you are not an employee, there is no minimum. You can choose not to contribute in the first year.
If you are 18 or older, saving at least $1,042.86 a year (i.e. $87 a month) until you reach your KiwiSaver retirement age maximises the government contributions. See below for more detail.
To help you save, the Government will make an annual contribution into your account as long as you meet these conditions:
- be over 18 and under 65; and
- have been in any KiwiSaver scheme for at least 12 months; and
- live in New Zealand; and
- have paid at least $1,042.86 (that’s just over $20 a week) into your KiwiSaver account between July 1st, 2018, and June 30th, 2019.
Note that your employer contributions don’t count, it’s what you have paid that matters.
If you contribute less than $1,042.86 from your pay, you can make a voluntary contribution to top up your account, so you do qualify for the Government contribution.
If you don’t meet all these criteria, you might still be eligible for some Government contribution. For instance, if you join KiwiSaver, turn 18, or become eligible for retirement withdrawals part way through the year, you’ll still get an annual Government contribution proportional to the time you’ve been eligible.
There are many circumstances that might affect your tax credit. For a full description of the rules please refer to the Government’s KiwiSaver website here.
If you are employed, your employer is required to contribute 3% of your gross annual salary to your CareSaver account. Contributions can be higher by negotiation with your employer.
You contribute a minimum of 3%. You can choose to contribute more than 3%, and the current options are 4%, 6%, 8% or 10% of your wages.
You can apply to IRD for a Savings Suspension – in most cases you will need to have been a member of CareSaver for at least 12 months. Stopping contributions for a time is easy, but remember, it will reduce the amount you’ll have for retirement.
You can put your contributions on hold for between three months and one year, if you really need to. Once your Savings Suspension has expired you will need to apply to IRD to have it extended.
Over that time, you won’t get government or employer contributions. You can restart at any time by asking your employer to start putting the money into your CareSaver account again.
Regular savings / contributions
- You can invest by making regular payments and change (or stop) the amount you save at any time
- You can complete the Direct Debit form online here. Once complete please return to email@example.com
- You can make a lump sum payment into your account at any time using internet banking or Direct debit.
- Bank: ANZ / Branch: Cnr Queen and Victoria Streets, Auckland
- Account Name: CareSaver Applications
- Account Number: 01-1839-0934700-00
- Please use your IRD Number as Particular, CareSaver Member Number (ESGxxxxx) as the Code, and your Surname in the Reference field
- Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to inform us of the transfer.
Accessing KiwiSaver Funds
When you reach the KiwiSaver retirement age, you can:
- Withdraw all or some of your savings;
- Leave your CareSaver savings until you want to access them;
- Set up a CareSaver periodic payment, this allows you to decide how much you want to take out on a regular basis (e.g. weekly or monthly) and have it paid to a bank account
Until your KiwiSaver Account balance is paid out in full, your balance continues to be invested and you can continue to save until you advise otherwise.
- Contributing to CareSaver becomes completely optional, but if you want to continue to contribute you can do so.
- The compulsory employer contributions stop. However, some employers may choose to continue. You will need to discuss this with your employer.
- Your contributions continue unchanged until you change them. If you are employed, you will have to tell your employer if you want to stop contributing to KiwiSaver. Otherwise, they have to keep making deductions from your pay.
- If you are currently saving by direct debit to CareSaver, this will continue until you tell us to stop.
- The Government Contributions cease
You may be able to withdraw all or part of your savings early if you’re buying your first home, emigrating, or suffering financial hardship or serious illness. You can read more about this on the Government’s KiwiSaver website here.
If you’ve been a member of KiwiSaver for three years you may be able to withdraw some of your KiwiSaver savings to put towards purchasing your first home.
You can withdraw your contributions, your employer’s contributions, any government contributions, and all of the investment returns in your KiwiSaver account (provided you leave a minimum balance of $1,000).
If you have owned a house before, you may still qualify if the Minister of Housing considers that your financial situation, in terms of your income, assets and liabilities, is the same as what would be expected for a person who has never owned a home. In this case, you need to get a certificate from Housing New Zealand verifying this.
Find out more about First Home Withdrawal here.
If you are eligible for a first home withdrawal you may be eligible for the extra HomeStart Grant. The HomeStart Grant is separate from the first home withdrawal payment. It is managed by Housing New Zealand and not the KiwiSaver provider.
To view a comprehensive eligibility checklist, visit Housing New Zealand’s website by clicking the link here.
If you are moving to Australia, you are not allowed to withdraw your KiwiSaver funds. You can either leave your funds in place or transfer them to a complying superannuation scheme in Australia.
For those permanently emigrating to other countries you must wait one year to withdraw your funds. You will be required to provide documentary evidence of such a move including airline tickets, proof of employment and proof of address in the country you’ve moved to. To read more about the conditions and obligations for early withdrawal under a permanent overseas move application, please refer to the Government’s KiwiSaver website section here.
You may be able to make a withdrawal if you are suffering or likely to suffer from significant financial hardship.
Significant financial hardship includes difficulties arising because of:
- your inability to meet minimum living expenses; or
- your inability to meet mortgage repayments on your principal family residence, resulting in the mortgagee seeking to enforce the mortgage; or
- the cost of modifying a residence to meet special needs arising from your own or a dependant’s disability; or
- the cost of medical treatment for your own or a dependant’s illness or injury; or
- the cost of palliative care for you or a dependant; or
- funeral costs for a dependant.
To read more on financial hardship claims, please refer to the Government’s KiwiSaver website section on financial hardship. Click here to learn more.
If you have an illness, injury or disability that permanently affects your ability to work or poses a risk of death, you may be eligible to withdraw your KiwiSaver funds early. You can withdraw the total funds in your account including:
- Your contributions
- Your employer’s contributions
- The $1,000 kickstart if you received this
- Any member tax credits
In the first three months of memberships, please contact Inland Revenue. After the first three months, apply through CareSaver.
To read more on serious illness claims, please refer to the Government’s KiwiSaver website section on serious illness. Click here to learn more.
If you die, your savings will be paid to your estate. It is important that you have a Will, and you keep it up to date.
If you have any issues or concerns about your investment, please contact us: email@example.com. If for any reason we are not able to resolve the matter, you can also contact the Public Trust at:
Public Trust Corporate Trustee Services Level 9, 34 Shortland Street P O Box 1598 Shortland Street, Auckland, 1140 Phone: +64 9 985 5300 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
If we, or the Supervisor, are unable to resolve your complaint, you can complain to Financial Services Complaints Ltd (FSCL). They can be contacted at:
Complaint Investigation Officer Level 4 101 Lambton Quay PO Box 5697 Wellington 6145 Phone: 0800 347 257.
If you would like to discuss, please call us on 0800 384 422 or email email@example.com