Bank Lending Criteria For Apartments

In a recent interview Century 21 national manager, Geoff Barnett made the prediction that “the New Zealand story for 2016 will be more Kiwis buying apartments as their first home option”

While this is option is not going to suit all first home buyers, some may find it to be a realistic opportunity to get onto the property ladder.  With Auckland housing developments currently in a boom phase, 2016 could indeed be the year of more Kiwis buying apartments as their first home option.

With that in mind we thought it would be worth compiling a summary of the bank’s lending criteria for apartment purchases.

Please keep in mind these criteria are a guideline only and does not guarantee approval.  Banking lending criteria is subject to change, please get in touch with us for further detail about getting pre-approval for apartments.

What is LVR:

Loan To Value Ratio (LVR) is  a measure of how much the Reserve Bank will let banks lend on property.  It is designed to provide a buffer for any market downturn that could detrimentally affect homeowners debt position.

From the Reserve Bank:

“A loan-to-value ratio (LVR) is a measure of how much a bank lends against mortgaged property, compared to the value of that property. Borrowers with LVRs of more than 80 percent (less than 20 percent deposit) are often stretching their financial resources. They are more vulnerable to an economic or financial shock, such as a recession or an increase in interest rates. When we talk about high-LVR (low-deposit) lending, we are generally referring to someone with less than a 20 percent deposit – or an LVR ratio of greater than 80 percent”


Bank Lending Criteria For Apartments



  • Standard 1 bedroom more than 45sqm
  • 2 bedroom more than 55sqm
  • 3 bedroom more than 65 sqm
  • 80% LVR



  • Apartments to a minimum of 50sqm.
  • Maximum LVR 85%

Will consider apartments with less square metres but maximum LVR for this would be 65% and requires a Registered Valuation (The Valuer is  to be acceptable to the Bank).

Co-op logo 1

Co-operative Bank

  • 80% LVR for owner occupied.
  • Flexible to 85% on case by case for quality property and excellent lending candidates.
  • 70% LVR for investment properties.
  • 50sqm excluding decks, storage units etc.
  • Requires: building report, registered valuation, body corp. assessment.


TSB Bank

  • Apartments to a minimum of 60sqm, excluding balconies.
  • Maximum LVR 70%
LVR is a guideline and happy to discuss outside of this for a good quality property and an excellent lending candidate.


  • 65% LVR
  • Minimum $500K borrowing.



  • 80% LVR
  • Owner / Tenanted
  • 50m2 excluding decks, storage units etc.


At time of publishing we had not received a response from ASB or BNZ but will update when possible.

Get in touch with us to discuss in detail how we can help you get pre-approval for your first home.


Dustin Lindale January 28, 2016 Blog