Welcome to AXA Switzerland
Login myAXA
 
 
 

Promotion of home ownership

Promotion of home ownership

The promotion of home-ownership program provides a secure basis for financing your home dreams.


All about promotion of home ownership

Financing based on Pillar 2 assets is possible for:
  • Purchasing or building residential property,
  • Extending or renovating residential property,
  • Repaying mortgages,
  • Purchasing shares in a housing cooperative or similar investment.
Conditions

You can withdraw Pillar 2 assets if you use the planned property as your main personal residence. Vacation homes and second homes cannot be financed using assets from your occupational benefits insurance. 



Advance withdrawal of Pillar 2 assets

Making your dream of owning your own home a reality requires some planning, also in terms of financing. AXA's "My pension fund" portal has information about all the key aspects of advance withdrawal: The amounts involved, the implications, and the procedure. This helps ensure that your venture get off to a good start.

A question of planning

Advance withdrawal is possible, but not always, not unlimited, and not without consequences for your retirement pension. AXA can show you the options.

  • Amounts available for advance withdrawal
    Minimum amount

    It is not possible to make an advance withdrawal of less than CHF 20,000 under the home ownership promotion program. Exception: This minimum amount does not apply to the purchase of shares in a housing co-operative or similar ownership stakes.

    Maximum amount

    The maximum amount that a pension fund can pay out is the full amount of your vested benefits – provided that you apply for the advance withdrawal before you turn 50. If you take advantage of the home ownership promotion scheme at some later stage, the following maximum amounts will apply:

    • The vested benefits at age 50.
    • Half of the vested benefits at the time of the withdrawal.

    You can generally find the current value of your vested benefits on your pension fund certificate (also referred to as a personal certificate or pension certificate).
    On request and if you present the required documentation, the pension fund will pay the amount directly to your creditor (e.g. seller, lender, construction company).

  • Implications of advance withdrawal

    Advance withdrawal also has a down side.

    • A reduction in future retirement pensions.
    • Reduced benefits on disability or death.
    • Higher taxes – the pension fund will automatically inform the Swiss Federal Tax Administration of the advance withdrawal within 30 days. The capital that you have withdrawn in advance must be declared as a lump-sum payment from you retirement assets.
    • Sales restrictions in the land register: If you buy your own home with the help of an advance withdrawal, a restriction is entered in the land register. If you sell your home at some later stage, the advance withdrawal has to be repaid to the occupational benefits institution.

    Adjustments in benefits for advance withdrawal

    Protect yourself against reduced benefits on disability or death by taking out supplementary insurance. Simply ask one of our pension advisors.

    Incapacity for work insurance (in German) 

    Whole life insurance (in German)

  • How it works

    An advance withdrawal is possible every five years until three years before regular retirement. But you need to be careful. Have you purchased any contribution years from your pension fund within the last three years? If so, you cannot withdraw the amount from your pension plan for three years from the date when you purchased contribution years.

    You can simply send a written request to your pension fund if:

    • You are planning an advance withdrawal for the first time.
    • Your last advance withdrawal took place more than five years ago.
    • Your last purchase of contribution years was more than three years ago.

    With your request and the other required documents (e.g. a valid purchase contract, building permit or extract from the land register) you confirm to the pension fund that you meet the conditions for an advance withdrawal.

    Are you married? If so, you require the written consent of your spouse.

 

 

For persons insured with an AXA pension fund

Forms service

Have you decided to ask for an advance withdrawal and are you insured with an AXA pension fund? If so, please notify us of your intention directly. You can simply download all the necessary forms.

Forms service

To access the forms service all you need is your contract number, which you can find on the personal certificate you receive annually.

Provisional benefit calculation

Find out today how your pension will look tomorrow. You can calculate your future benefits from your occupational pension plan before you make an advance withdrawal – by using the online calculator for the promotion of residential property ownership. The access code is printed on the personal certificate you receive every year.

Online calculation 

If you're unable to access the application, you can ask your employer to make the calculation for you.



Pledge

Pillar 2 – a solid foundation for buying your own home. Thanks to the possibility of pledging benefits from your occupational benefits plan, your dream of owning your own home can become a reality. Even if the finances are suddenly inadequate. With this option, everything – from cellar to attic, from gazebo to multi-function kitchen – will be well provided for.

The path to owning your own home

Plan the financing of your own home carefully and find out about the potential size of the pledge, the impact on your pension benefits, and how to go about it.

  • Maximum amount for pledge

    There is no minimum amount for a pledge. The maximum amount that a pension fund can pay out is the full amount of your vested benefits – provided that you use the pledge option before you turn 50. If you take advantage of the home ownership promotion program at some later stage, the following maximum amounts will apply:

    • The vested benefits at age 50,
    • Half of the vested benefits at the time that the pledge is made.

    You can generally find the current value of your vested benefits on your pension fund certificate (also referred to as a personal certificate or pension certificate).

  • Consequences of a pledge

    Disclosing your pension benefits as a pledge does not result in any restrictions or reductions. In fact, under the right circumstances you could even benefit from a better mortgage interest rate or more generous borrowing terms.
    However, if it comes to the point where the pledge is realized, you will face the following consequences:

    • A reduction in future retirement pensions.
    • Reduced benefits on disability or death.
    • Higher taxes – the pension fund will automatically inform the Swiss Federal Tax Administration of the pledge within 30 days. The capital in question must be declared as a lump-sum payment from you retirement assets.
    • Sales restrictions in the land register: If you buy your own home with the help of a pledge, a restriction is entered in the land register. If you sell your home at some later stage, the amount that you pledged has to be repaid to the occupational benefits institution.
  • How it works

    Arrange the pledge through your bank, which will then inform the pension fund about the pledge.

    Are you married? If so, you require the written consent of your spouse.

 

For persons insured with an AXA pension fund

Forms service

Perhaps you're already insured with an AXA pension fund? Would you like more information? You can simply download all the information you need.

To access the forms service all you need is your contract number, which you can find on the personal certificate you receive annually.

Forms service



Frequently asked questions about the home ownership promotion program

If you are resident outside Switzerland, approaching retirement or disabled, it's not always a easy to arrange an advance withdrawal from a pension fund. AXA Winterthur is glad to provide the information you need.

  • Prerequisites for an advance withdrawal
    When can I withdraw an amount to purchase residential property?

    An advance withdrawal from a pension fund is possible if

    • You have already accrued retirement assets of at least CHF 20,000 in the pension fund.
    • You are not disabled.
    • Retirement is at least three years away.
    • Your last advance withdrawal was more than five years ago.
  • Advance withdrawal for purchasing residential property abroad
    Can a foreign citizen withdraw pension fund assets in order to finance a home in his country of origin?

    Yes, an advance withdrawal is possible if the family (spouse/children) of the person in question live in the house and the applicant regularly spends time there.

  • Option as a member of a community of heirs to make an advance withdrawal
    Our community of heirs together owns a plot of land. As a member of that community, I would like to buy the plot together with the house. Is an advance withdrawal possible?

    No. Advance withdrawals are possible only if the jointly owned property is split among spouses or registered partners.

 

All about financing

Find out how much retirement capital can be made available to finance your home, what additional costs you may incur, and what kinds of ventures can be financed with an advance withdrawal.

  • Possible amount for an advance withdrawal / pledge
    What is the maximum that I can pledge or withdraw in advance?

    The minimum amount for an advance withdrawal is CHF 20,000. There is no minimum for a pledge.

    The maximum amount that a pension fund can pay out is the full amount of your vested benefits – provided that you apply for the advance withdrawal or pledge before you turn 50. If you take advantage of the home ownership promotion program at some later stage, the following maximum amounts will apply:

    • The vested benefits at age 50.
    • Half of the vested benefits at the time of the pledge.
  • Advance withdrawal amounts for spouses
    How much can each spouse withdraw in advance from his/her pension fund to finance a home if they are joint owners?

    Each spouse can withdraw at maximum his/her share of the total value of the house.

    An example:

    Tom and Karen are planning to buy a house valued at CHF 500,000. Each will own half.:
    Both Tom and Karen can withdraw a maximum of CHF 250,000, even if their total available vested benefits are higher. If the amount of vested benefits is lower, they can withdraw only up to the total amount.

  • Additional costs
    Which additional costs will result from an advance withdrawal?

    Additional costs arise through

    • Tax on the advance withdrawal.

    The advance withdrawal is taxed at a separate, reduced rate as income.

    • The entry in the land register.

    If you buy your home with the help of an advance withdrawal, a sales restriction is entered in the land register, which incurs additional costs.

    • Administration overheads of the occupational benefits institution.

    Depending on you occupational benefits institution, charges may be applied for reviewing and administering the advance withdrawal (see the pension fund regulations).

  • Advance withdrawal to preserve value
    Is it possible to withdrawal funds for renovation work that preserves rather than adds value?

    Yes, you can withdraw funds in advance to preserve the value of your home.

  • Building with multiple units
    I have the opportunity to buy a house with two apartments. Can I finance it with an advance withdrawal?

    An advance withdrawal can be used only to finance the part of the property in which you live.

  • Mortgage interest rates
    Can I use an advance withdrawal to pay mortgage interest?

    No, it is not permitted to use an advance withdrawal to finance mortgage interest.



Explanation of important terms

Benefits case

A benefits case occurs when a person reaches retirement age, becomes disabled, or dies.

 

BVG age

Your BVG age is calculated by subtracting your birth year from the calendar year.

Example

Today's date: 01.01.2010
Date of birth: 21.11.1950

Actual age: 59
BVG age: 60

 

BVG occupational benefits

The Federal Law on Occupational Retirement, Survivors' and Disability Pension Plans (BVG) defines the following occupational benefits:

 

Disability benefits
  • Disability pension
  • Disabled person's child's pension

 

Occupational benefits fund regulations

Every occupational benefits institution issues its own regulations that define the scope of its insurance.

All pension fund regulations must specify at least the following:

  • The range of benefits (e.g. on retirement, disability, death).
  • The way that benefits are financed (e.g. annually, quarterly, with payments in arrears).
  • The conditions for entitlement (e.g. duty to provide support)
  • The various pension plans (BVG plan, plan for managers).
  • The various groups of insured persons (e.g. employees, managers)

 

Personal certificate

The personal certificate (which is also known as a pension certificate or pension fund certificate) serves information purposes and contains all the important information about your insured benefits under the occupational benefits program.

 

Promotion of home ownership

The home ownership promotion program allows you to withdraw amounts in advance or pledge your retirement assets in order to finance owner-occupied residential property.

 

Retirement assets

Retirement assets are the amount that accrues in your occupational benefits account under a Pillar 2 plan. The available assets consist of:

  • The individual retirement credits.
  • The vested benefits brought into the fund.
  • Amounts paid into the account by the employer and/or from a benefits purchase.
  • Interest earned on these amounts.
  • Surplus portions.

The amount of your mandatory retirement assets is determined solely by the retirement credits and amounts that are paid into the account pursuant to the minimum BVG provisions, plus interest. The minimum interest rate is set by the Federal Council.

The retirement capital equals the retirement assets at the time of retirement. You can find your estimated retirement capital on your pension fund certificate. It is a projection of the available retirement assets that is based on your current pensionable salary, the regulatory retirement credits, and the current guaranteed interest rates.

 

Retirement benefits
  • Retirement pension
  • Retired person's child's pension

 

Retirement pension

You can calculate your annual retirement pension by multiplying the retirement assets on the retirement date by the conversion rate valid at that time.

 

Survivors' benefits
  • Widow's or widower's pension
  • Single payment for widows or widowers
  • Orphan's pension


Search Consultants