First Home Buyer Grants
The government has developed assistance schemes that include incentives and exemptions from certain fees associated with buying a property. Between these different programs, you are sure to benefit and have a more convenient position as you make your way through the home-buying process for the first time.
First Home Owner Grant (FHOG)
Perhaps the most popular government assistance scheme is the First Home Owner Grant (FHOG) scheme. Under this scheme, eligible first home buyers can receive a grant of $10,000. They can then use this amount towards purchasing their first home. There are variations of the FHOG across different states, such as the NSW First Home Buyer Grant and the VIC First Home Owner Grant. In each variation, the primary purpose is the same: making the property market more accessible to newcomers and first home buyers.
The application for this grant can also be completed with the help of your trusted mortgage broker. One essential step that Lendstreet can assist you with is choosing a lender that is an approved agent for this scheme, as unapproved lenders will deem you illegible and not receive the grant.
First Home Buyer Assistance Scheme (FHBAS) or Stamp Duty Exemption
One of the first programs you may be eligible to join if you purchase a home in NSW is the stamp duty waiver or stamp duty concession program. This scheme allows you to either be exempt from paying transfer duty charges or to pay a reduced amount. The amount you will be called to pay is determined by the value of the home you are buying. Your mortgage broker can help you with calculating how much that exemption may be. They will also be there to assist you with gathering all of the necessary paperwork and applying for the reduction.
There are specific timeframes within which a home must have been bought to be eligible for these concessions. So, it is worth checking whether there are more recent updates to this scheme that allow for higher-value properties to also access this concession.
Home Builder Grant
This grant is ideal if you’re intending to build your new home or extensively renovate an existing one. The Home Builder Grant consists of a sum of $15,000 — and it is only granted to individuals who earn no more than $125,000 a year or couples with a combined income of under $200,000 a year. The Home Builder Grant sum can be used to pay for any part of either the purchase of your property or the building on land you have purchased.
Eligibility for Home Buyer Grants
Eligibility for these government assistance schemes can vary greatly, but usually, certain conditions need to be met if you are looking to get access to these programmes. These include:
- Applying as an individual and not as part of a trust or company.
- Being a legal adult over the age of 18
- At least one person in the contract is expected and required to be either an Australian citizen or a permanent resident
- The person, or in the case of a couple, the couple purchasing the property must not have previously owned or even co-owned a residential property in Australia
- Eligibility for these programs can only be granted once; therefore, you cannot participate in them again after your first participation in these schemes.
Speak to the Experts at Lendstreet
Different government grants and schemes are available, depending on which state or territory you are in. It is always advisable to carefully study what your state offers, but you can always talk to a Lendstreet mortgage broker for questions. With years of experience helping first home buyers secure the best loan products and grants, we’re equipped to help you understand your eligibility for home buyer grants and purchase your first home. To learn more about how we can assist you with your home buyer grant needs, contact us by phone or email, or complete the form below.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where do I apply for the First Home Owner Grant?
You can apply for the FHOG through an approved lending agent (who your mortgage broker can connect you with) or directly via the NSW Revenue website if you’re in NSW and the State Revenue Office website if you’re in Victoria. To apply for your home buyer grant, you’ll need to have various documentation and evidence at hand to submit with your application. This may include proof of identity, income, and savings — not just for you but anyone else on the application form.
Can I apply for both the Home Builder and First Home Owner Grant?
While it may technically be possible to apply for both the Home Builder and First Home Owner grants, you must meet the eligibility criteria for both grants individually. For example, the Home Builder Grant is mainly targeted at individuals or couples who are constructing a new home on land they may already own, while the First Home Owner Grant is aimed at first home buyers rather than builders.
Do I need to be an Australian citizen to apply?
Yes, for homeowner grants available in Australia, you must either be an Australian citizen or a permanent resident in Australia to apply successfully.
What if I want to sell my property after receiving the grant?
As first home buyer grants and other government schemes are created and targeted to homeowners and not investors, you must usually have plans to live in your new home. If you sell your property in a specified period after receiving the grant (this is usually between 6 and 12 months, depending on the grant), you may be required to repay the grant. For example, the First Home Owner Grant requires you to have plans to live in the new property for at least 12 months as your PPR (Permanent Place of Residence).
Can I apply for the First Home Owner Grant if I have owned land but not property?
The criteria for the First Home Owner Grant and associated schemes require the applicant not to have owned or co-owned a residential property in Australia before. So, if you’ve only owned land but never a residential property, you should be eligible to apply! However, we recommend checking the terms and conditions unique to each grant or scheme — or seeking advice from a knowledgeable mortgage broker, who can help you determine your eligibility for grants and find you the best loans for your situation.
Can I use the FHOG to pay my deposit?
Yes! The First Home Owner Grant is most commonly used by first-time homebuyers to pay off part of their home deposit. However, that’s not a hard-and-fast rule, as you can also use it to pay for the closing costs or renovation costs of your property.
How much does my home need to cost for me to be eligible for the FHOG?
If you’re purchasing a home valued at $600,000 or less (for NSW properties), you are eligible to apply for the First Home Owner Grant. In cases where you are building a new home on land that you are buying, that amount is $750,000, instead. It’s important to note that the FHOG amount may vary between states; for example, it is $750,000 for Victoria properties regardless of if you are buying or building a new property.
Where can I find additional information on government grants per state?