National Heritage Preservation Incentive Fund

The National Heritage Preservation Incentive Fund, administered by Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga, provides financial incentives to encourage the conservation of privately owned heritage places recognised on the New Zealand Heritage List/Rārangi Kōrero.

Highfield Woolshed
Highfield Woolshed, Waiau.
Image: D Margetts Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taongaexpand/collapse

Funding priorities

Priority is given to heritage of national significance which needs conservation work and heritage places of national significance where conservation work is planned and could be improved through extra funding.

While all eligible projects will be considered, priorities for funding for the 2022 round are:

  • Priority 1: the conservation and preservation of sites of significance to Māori; and/or
  • Priority 2: the conservation work to increase resilience of heritage places against the impacts of climate change including the stabilisation of land and archaeological sites; and/or
  • Priority 3: seismic strengthening and risk management planning.
  • All other eligible work.

Private owners can apply for funding

You can apply to the fund if you are a private owner of a heritage property.  Your conservation project must also meet the eligibility requirements below.

Who cannot apply for funding?

You cannot apply to the fund if you are eligible to apply to the Lottery Grants Board Te Puna Tahua - for example incorporated societies, charitable trusts, companies with charitable status. Public sector agencies such as government departments, Crown entities, state-owned enterprises, local authorities, local authority trading enterprises also cannot apply to the fund.

What types of properties are eligible for funding?

You can apply for funding for any property that is entered on the New Zealand Heritage List, other than historic areas.

You can apply for funding for a place within the boundary of a Listed historic area if that place contributes to the area’s heritage values and could satisfy the requirements for entry on the New Zealand Heritage List as a Category 1 historic place.

You can apply for funding for a property that is going through the listing process, with the exception of places proposed as Category 2 historic places.

Please contact your nearest Heritage New Zealand office for advice if you are unsure about the heritage significance of your property or its eligibility for funding. 

What types of projects are eligible for funding?

You can apply for funding for the following types of conservation projects:

  • Stabilisation, repair or restoration relating to historic buildings or structures (eg. repairs to masonry, joinery, plaster or glazing, earthquake strengthening or fire protection)
  • Conservation work relating to land or archaeological sites (eg. site stabilisation, repair, vegetation management or fencing)
  • Professional services (e.g. research, condition reports, conservation plans, engineer reports, conservation work specifications, management plans or supervision of work).

What types of projects are NOT eligible for funding?

The following projects are not eligible for funding:

  • Construction of new buildings or structures not for the purpose of preserving heritage values
  • Additions, extensions, facilities or amenities of existing buildings
  • Reconstruction or replicas of missing buildings or structures
  • Removal, relocation or demolition of buildings or structures
  • Insurance, debt repayments or re-financing costs
  • Purchase of land or buildings
  • Purchase or conservation of portable heritage objects
  • Purchase of construction machinery or tradespersons' equipment
  • Heritage conservation projects that have already been completed
  • Work that has already received Crown funding.

German Mission House, Chatham Islands
German Mission House, Chatham Islandsexpand/collapse

How much and what type of assistance is available?

Assistance is in the form of grants.  You cannot get funding for more than 50% of the cost of conservation work for a specific project, and individual grants will not normally be greater than $100,000.  

You cannot get funding from more than one government agency for the same project work. However, you can apply to more than one government fund for different parts of a large project. For example you can apply to Heritage EQUIP for earthquake strengthening and to the National Heritage Preservation Incentive Fund for non-seismic heritage components of the project.

Applications - how and when can I apply for funding?

Applications must be made on the appropriate form provided by Heritage New Zealand and sent with all required supporting material to the nearest Heritage New Zealand office.  

Applications for the 2022 round open on 1 April 2022, and close on 24 June 2022

Application forms

You can download the application form for the Fund (pdf, 910kb) as a writeable pdf form.  

The completed form cannot be sent on-line from this website, you will need to:

  • Download the form and save to your own computer
  • Complete the form by typing directly into it, and
  • Complete the checklist (found after the signature page)
  • Insert an electronic signature; or print the form, sign it, and scan the form.
  • Email the form and all supporting information to your nearest Heritage New Zealand office.    

Make sure you include all relevant documentation with your application form, and that you have completed and included the checklist.   

If you have any problems using the writeable pdf form, please contact your nearest Heritage New Zealand office.

What should I consider before applying?

Before applying, consider:

  • Do you need to prepare a conservation plan, structural assessment, concept design or specifications before proceeding with physical works?
  • We can fund up to half of the project costs: how will you fund the remainder of the project? What other funding sources are available?
  • Should/can the work be phased over several years?  This could make the work more affordable for you and enable you to make funding applications for smaller amounts over a number of years.
  • Remember, if your application is successful you will be paid once the work has been completed.  However, you may need to pay contractors monthly.  If the works will take some time to complete you should consider requesting that the grant be paid in instalments after distinct stages of the work are completed.

Discuss your proposals with Heritage New Zealand advisors before finalising your application.

How will my application be assessed?

In addition to considering the priorities for funding (stated above), your application will be assessed by Heritage New Zealand using set criteria including extent of national significance, extent of public benefit, level of urgency of work, level of conservation standards proposed, and cost effectiveness. Additional criteria used for assessment include value for money in the national public interest, geographic spread and the types of heritage to be conserved.  Funding priorities are set each year and these will be published on this website (see above).

Allocation of funding is made by the Board of Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga.

Ritchie Residence
Ritchie residence, Dunedin
Image: J Howard Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga

How to prepare a good application

To help us assess your application, make sure you answer every question in detail. Use the checklist (page 8 of the application form) as a guide, and focus on the following aspects in particular  

  • The fund prioritises significant heritage places so it is important to set out the heritage values. Information on the heritage values of the place may be available on the New Zealand Heritage List, or from district council heritage inventories.
  • So that we can assess whether the proposed work will preserve the heritage values of the place, include full information on the project including any background work, reports, seismic assessments, heritage assessments. Itemise these and append them to your application.
  • Tell us whether the work is essential and/or urgent, and why.
  • Does the proposed work meet the 2022 funding priorities set out above – tell us how.
  • Consultation with stakeholders, including consultation with iwi where necessary, should be undertaken before finalising the project. Tell us who you have consulted with and the extent of consultation.
  • Itemised costs should be supported by itemised tenders, quotes, recent invoices for similar work or other supporting evidence.

Complete the more detailed checklist within the application form and include this with your completed application.

What if your grant application is successful – what happens next?

Once funding is approved, a contract is prepared and signed between Heritage New Zealand and the owner of the heritage property specifying the conservation work to be funded and the applicable conditions.  Conditions may include the establishment of a heritage covenant under the Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga Act, or other guarantees that the property will be protected from damage, demolition or destruction. Other conditions will include owner compliance with all statutory requirements, availability of the property for inspection of the conservation work, agreed completion dates, and public reporting and acknowledgement of the funding of the projects.

Grant payments from the fund may be made in agreed instalments on completion of defined stages of the project. The final payment will normally be made after certification, following final inspection, that the agreed conservation work has been completed.

Further information

For further information on applying to the fund, contact your nearest Heritage New Zealand office.

Northland Area Office -for applications from Northland
Northern Regional Office - for applications from Auckland, Hauraki, Thames/ Coromandel
Lower Northern Area Office - for applications from Bay of Plenty, Waikato, Gisborne
Tira Pouhere Taonga - for applications concerning Maori heritage, c/- Heritage New Zealand's National Office,
Central Regional Office - for applications from lower North Island (including Taranaki, Nelson/Tasman and Marlborough) and Chatham Islands
Southern Regional Office - for applications from Canterbury and West Coast
Otago/Southland Area Office - for applications from Otago, Southland.

  • Approved grants

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    Larnach Castle entranceway

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