Loans For Unemployed In NZ: Which Companies Can Approve A Loan?

Date Jan 10, 2022
Blog category Personal Loan
By Staff writer


Are you currently unemployed and in need of financial assistance? This could go to covering your bills, insurance, and other expenses in the meantime. There are a few practical solutions to avoid debt, one of which is to look for a reputable lending company that can assist you with your needs while you're out of work.

Banks and lending organisations are usually hesitant to lend to applicants who do not have assets or a regular stream of income. But, fortunately for Kiwis, it is now easier to get approved if all requirements are met. This is due to a new addendum released by the NZ government that updated its provisions for responsible lending during the pandemic.

One of its goals is to help people who are going through financial difficulties, such as "reductions in income, uncertainty about future employment or income prospects, and increases in expenses for the borrower's household or larger family."

While there are banks that offer low-interest loans for certain purposes, unemployed individuals may not be approved immediately because lenders have strict requirements. Fortunately, there are other companies that provide the same lending services suited for borrowers who are recently unemployed.

Work & Income NZ (WINZ)

WINZ was established primarily to provide hardship assistance, particularly to unemployed individuals, through grants and advance payments. Borrowers don't have to pay excessive interest rates or fees, as they would with other types of loans. The most important thing here is to offer proof of your situation to increase your chances of approval.

If you fall under any of these circumstances, you can submit your application to WINZ for financial assistance. 

  • Terminated due to redundancy 
  • Health condition or disability 
  • Lost job because of a COVID-19 vax requirement 
  • Left voluntarily or terminated for misconduct 
  • On strike and need help with living expenses
  • A seasonal worker
  • Deported to NZ
  • Released from prison
  • Self-employed but can no longer work for yourself
  • Just finished studying
  • Just returned from overseas
  • Stopped working during, or at the end of, a trial period of up to 90 days. 

Read: Need Cash? Discover These Personal Loan Options In NZ


Your KiwiSaver account is a real lifesaver, especially if you have recently lost your job and are in need of financial assistance to cover your expenses. If you still have a KiwiSaver balance from previous jobs, you can easily get cash with no interest.

Before withdrawing, account holders need to show significant financial hardship that include: 

  • Cannot meet minimum living expenses
  • Cannot pay mortgage where they live in, and mortgagor seeks enforcement of mortgage
  • Need to modify the home to meet specific needs of a dependent family member
  • Need to pay for medical treatment 
  • Have a serious illness
  • Need to pay funeral expenses of a dependent family member. 

First Credit Union 

As a non-banking institution, First Credit Union offers low-interest personal rates starting at 9.95% p.a. with no application fees. With this, borrowers can get on top of their living expenses while looking for work, or have a cushion if they want to leave their job. 

Unity Money NZ 

Under its new name, Unity (formerly NZCU) is a Kiwi-owned financial cooperative where it is managed by the people themselves. They have different baywide branches across the country including NZCU Baywide, NZCU South, NZCU Central, and ACU. 

Unity offers low interest rates between 7.90% and 25.90% p.a. For a term of 6 months to 7 years. Applicants can loan between $2,000 and $60,000, depending on how much they need. They have an approval fee of $200 and third-party charges amount to $29.44 in total. 


Good Shepherd NZ 

Good Shepherd was founded in 2012 to help Kiwis, particularly women, girls, and families, who are at a disadvantage in the country. This also includes those with low income and individuals who don’t have work. 

Interested borrowers can choose between Good Loans and COVID Relief Loans, where they can get up to $2,000 interest-free loan. One can apply for car finance, repairs, computer purchases, medical bills, school fees, new household equipment, and other personal living expenses and other urgent costs.

Nga Tangata 

Nga Tangata is a non-profit organisation and is working together with Kiwibank that offers interest-free and no-fee loans designed to provide financial assistance for unemployed individuals.

Applicants will need to go through their 9-step process, which includes talking to a financial mentor to help in determining which type of loan is best for them, as well as coaching them on how to create a budget so they can manage their money better. 


ANZ currently offers no application fee on their personal loans, making them one of the few banks that lend money to those who need it most. They have a standard interest rate of 12.90% p.a. With a minimum loan amount of $1,000 for eligible Jumpstart borrowers. 


ASB also provides unsecured personal loans with a standard interest of 12.90% p.a. on a minimum loan amount of $2,000. While there are banks that offer no establishment fees, ASB has a $99 processing fee and other charges upon approval. 


For those who have an account with Kiwibank, they can also get a personal loan to shoulder their everyday expenses while looking for work. Kiwibank offers standard interest rates between 13.95% and 18.95% p.a. 

Need a loan ASAP?

It can be difficult to cover your daily expenses when you don’t have the money to do so. With glimp, you can compare interest rates and lenders in NZ that offer competitive rates for your specific situation. All of these for FREE!

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