If this is your dream, Nambawan Super can assist with making it a reality. The main aim of Superannuation is to ensure people save for a financially secure lifestyle in retirement. Because of this, there are restrictions on withdrawing money from your super account.
However, the Papua New Guinea superannuation laws recognise the need for appropriate housing in our society. They provide an option for Members to access some of their super savings before retirement through a Housing Advance.
If you have been contributing to an Authorised Superannuation Fund (ASF), such as Nambawan Super, for at least 5 years, you are eligible to apply for an advance, of up to the total of the super contributions you have personally made, provided you do not have any outstanding balance from a previous Housing Advance. The advance does not include any interest component or amount for the Employer's contributions. However, it does include any Voluntary Contributions you have made.
The advance can only be used to finance your principal place of residence. This is defined as the house that you live in and go to work from, or that you will live in after you retire. The only exception to this rule is if you are within 5 years of reaching the retirement age of 55 years. If you are purchasing an existing home and the Housing Advance you are eligible for will not be enough to buy the house outright, you can put the advance towards the equity component you are likely to need to obtain a loan from a Bank or other financial institution.
Putting in extra contributions if you want to use Housing Advance for a home loan is possible through Voluntary Contribution. Voluntary Contribution increases your housing eligibility, especially if you want to have enough equity to secure a home loan. See the example below.
After 7 years, a Member earning K25,000, who contributes the mandatory 6% employee contribution will have K10,500 available for Housing Advance. However, if that Member increases their employee contribution through Voluntary Contribution to 15%, they will have K26,250 available for Housing Advance. Banks will generally only loan to a maximum of 9 times what you have saved as a deposit. As shown above, an employee making a mandatory contribution (6%) would only be able to borrow K94,500. Whereas an employee contributing 15% through voluntary contribution can borrow up to K236,250.
Build, buy, or improve
If you meet the eligibility requirements and are granted a Housing Advance, you can use it to purchase an existing house, construct a new house, or undertake renovations, extensions, or improvements. If you are planning to build or renovate, the maximum amount of the Advance you can use for the labour cost is K600.
If you are planning to build on State land your application will need to include:
- A firm and valid quotation from a hardware supplier approved by Nambawan Super, itemising the materials to be used in the construction;
- A Statutory Declaration affirming the cost of labour you will incur on the construction;
- A plan of the building.
Renovations & extensions
If you are planning to use the Housing Advance to renovate, extend or improve your principal residence, your application will need to include:
- Evidence that you own the property. For example, a copy of the title to a residential lease, State lease, copy of lease, transfer, or NHC confirmation letter.
- A photograph of the house.
How your Housing Advance funds are applied
If granted, your Housing Advance will be paid directly to the vendor if you are buying a property, or to the approved suppliers that you specify on your application form if you are building, renovating, or extending. Where you require equity to qualify for a Bank loan, your Housing Advance payment will be paid directly to the Bank providing the loan.
For the Housing Advance, your principal residence can be on either customary land or State land.
If you plan to build on Customary land, your Housing Advance application will need to include:
- A Clan Land Usage Agreement, written approval from the clan elders, confirming the land has been made available for you to use.
- A firm and valid quotation from a hardware supplier approved by Nambawan Super, itemising the materials to be used in the construction.
- A Statutory Declaration affirming the cost of labour you will incur on the construction.
- A plan of the building.
If you are buying a building on State land, your Housing Advance application will have to include:
- Evidence that the Vendor has clear title over the property;
- A copy of the Bank loan approval (if the Housing Advance will not be enough to cover the purchase price of the house). Before Nambawan Super can release the payment for the Advance, you must provide a payslip to confirm that the repayment arrangements have been established, and the first repayment has been deducted from your pay.
Remembering that the primary aim of Superannuation is retirement saving, you are required to repay your Housing Advance to return the balance of your savings to what they were. The repayment is made as an extra 2% contribution, on top of your normal 6% employee super contribution. The extra 2% will be used to offset the amount advanced to you.
If you exit Nambawan Super, any balance outstanding from your Housing Advance will be deducted from your final benefits. If you sell the residence, you must repay any outstanding Housing Advance balance in full. Members can make additional lump sum repayments directly to Nambawan Super to pay their outstanding balance quicker.
The approval process
Housing Advance approvals are not automatically granted. The Trustee of Nambawan Super must make sure they meet the guidelines set out in the legislation. Each application is screened carefully before a decision can be made.
Completing your Housing Advance Application form
The forms are available at all Nambawan Super Branches around PNG, and can also be downloaded here. As well as the information required in the application form, you will also need to supply the outlined supporting documents.
- You must have been contributing to the Fund continuously for over five (5) years.
- You are eligible to use the total amount of your own Contributions (excluding any interest and employer contributions).
- You can also use your own contributions as equity towards a bank loan to purchase a house, renovate or extend an existing house.
- You will also need to pay a minimum of 2%, or more on top of your mandatory 6% deducted from your pay, to offset the amount advanced to you.
- The advance can only be used to finance your principal residence (the only exception being if you are within 5 years of reaching retirement age).
- The advance will only be granted to those who do not have any existing housing advance. If you have, an existing Housing Advance, you will need to pay it off before applying for a new one.
- If granted, your Housing Advance will be paid directly to the vendor or the approved suppliers or Bank.
Increase your Housing Advance eligibility
Increase your Housing Advance eligibility amount by doing Voluntary Contributions.