Ask A Question  | Learn more about New Zealand

When do I become a New Zealand citizen if I apply for the investor 1 visa?

My husband has been working on our New Zealand application, and we are in the process of selecting an authorized agent to handle the process for us. We still have questions about the exact timeline, however. When do we become citizens?

  • NAA Immigration and Education Ltd
    July 13, 2018

    It generally takes up to 17 months (varies from time to time) to process your resident application under Investor I category, including the 12 months period to complete your investment in New Zealand. Once you have been approved a resident visa, it will take 3 years from the date you complete your investment in NZ before you can be granted an unconditional resident visa. Once you have had your resident visa for at least 5 years, you will be eligible to apply for NZ Citizenship. To be eligible for New Zealand citizenship by grant, you must have: (1) New Zealand residence (i.e. hold a residence permit, a residence visa, or a permanent residence visa issued by Immigration New Zealand, or you are an Australian citizen or permanent resident); and (2) had New Zealand residence for the last five years; and (3) lived in New Zealand for at least 1350 days - with New Zealand residence - during the five years immediately before your application; and (4) lived in New Zealand for at least 240 days - with New Zealand residence - in each of those five years. Hope this has answered your question.

  • July 25, 2018

    You will generally be able to apply for citizenship after you've been in New Zealand on a resident visa for more than five years. Additionally, there are requirements placed on presence in New Zealand (1,350 days across five years), English language ability, character, etc. Please note: There is a difference between a resident visa and a permanent resident visa in New Zealand. A resident visa (with conditions) is what you'll get after the nominated funds have been invested in New Zealand. After all conditions have been met, you can apply for a permanent resident visa. In New Zealand, permanent is really permanent (no requirements placed on presence in New Zealand, etc.). So, depending on your plans, permanent residency might be enough for you, as you can come back to New Zealand at any time in the future. Applying for citizenship, however, remains an option if you wish to do so and meet the requirements.