Meredith Ryan

Meredith recognises that being able to own her own home is a responsibility but believes it's worth it for the security of having somewhere stable to live. “I can finally have a home rather than a room in a house, and being back close to my whänau is an added bonus.

Meredith Ryan, who affiliates to Awarua, works as a graduate surveyor with Bonisch Consultants in Invercargill and  brought her first home in 2013 with some help from her Whai Rawa account.

“I made my decision to buy a house because I was tired of shifting around and being unable to turn a house into a home. Being at the mercy of landlords and having to deal with flatmates who weren’t always ideal was tiring and I really wanted a place to call my own – a place to put some roots down. In 2012, I shifted house four times, so I was well and truly over being transient.”

Meredith moved home for a few months while she searched for the right place. “I was pretty lucky to be able to do this and save a bit of extra money while I was at it. It took about four months to find the right place within my budget and now it feels pretty good. I can redecorate and add my own touches, so I’ve really been able to turn it into a home.”

Meredith recognises that being able to own her own home is a responsibility but believes it’s worth it for the security of having somewhere stable to live. “I can finally have a home rather than a room in a house, and being back close to my whänau is an added bonus.

“Whai Rawa is pretty easy to use. Small contributions add up and the matched saving scheme really does encourage me to ensure I at least save that minimal amount. The process of using my savings to top up my house deposit was also pretty straightforward and when you’re scratching around to find a house deposit, having any additional savings available for it is awesome. The Whai Rawa team were great to deal with and helped me to sort a last minute complication with only two days to go before the settlement date. That was such a relief.”

Meredith doesn’t make massive contributions to her Whai Rawa account, but she finds having an automatic payment means it’s easy to save without thinking about it.

“I’ll keep my AP going because any form of forced saving is going to benefit me in the long run. Saving is hard enough but being able to put small amounts away without easy access can only be a good thing. Now that I have my house, I guess the next step is to save towards retirement. I’m not naive enough to think I don’t need to save for this and while I might not be able to save a lot, any small amount will help.”