Are you a first home buyer ready to purchase your new home? Depending on your state, you may be eligible for a First Home Owners Grant to help you get in to your own home sooner. Many states have recently made changes to the eligibility criteria for their First Home Owner Grants, and we’ve got a quick summary for you below!
In Victoria, there is no stamp duty applicable to purchase under $600,000, giving first home buyers a helping hand buying their first home. For properties priced from $600,000 to $750,000 the stamp duty increases slightly. The Victorian government is also giving farmers some stamp duty relief with a stamp duty concession when they purchase their first farm. Regional Victoria will also see their First Home Owner Grant increased if purchasing a property up to $750,000. These home buyers may qualify for a First Home Owner Grant of $20,000, enabling them to buy their first home sooner.
When buying off the plan in Victoria, stamp duty concessions have also changed. Previously both investors and first home owners only paid stamp duty on the land the property is sitting on. This concession is now only available to purchasers who plan to buy a property off the plan that will serve as their main home, or if they qualify for first home buyer stamp duty concessions.
New South Wales
There are two different options available to first home buyers in New South Wales. To qualify for the First Home Buyers Assistance Scheme, the value of the home must not exceed $800,000. Purchasers must move into the property within 12 months of purchase and live there for at least six months. New South Wales also offers a First Home Buyers Grant for new homes. This is available to those buying or building their first home, as long as the home’s value does not exceed $750,000 and it’s a new home no one has lived in before.
From July 1, 3019, the First Home Owner Grant has changed in the Australian Capital Territory, and eligible applicants who enter into a transaction with a commencement date on or after this date will not receive the grant. The ACT Government also has the Home Buyer Concession Scheme. For transactions entered into on or before June 30, 2019, the HBCS applies to the purchase of a new home that has not been previously occupied or sold as a place of residence, a block of land, or an off the plan purchase agreement. Substantially renovated homes are no longer eligible for the HBCS. From July 1, 2019, home buyers will no longer have to pay any duty, allowing them to purchase their first home sooner. Further eligibility criteria for the HBCS apply, including income threshold tests.
Depending on the date of the purchaser’s contract of sale in Queensland, they are eligible to receive either $15,000 or $20,000 towards buying or building a new house, unit or townhouse. The property and the land it sits on must be valued at less than $750,000 in order for applicants to qualify for the grant. First home buyers purchasing a home that has been substantially renovated (including the land) may also be eligible for the grant as long as the home was renovated before the purchase was made, and has not been lived in since the renovations were complete.
First home buyers in South Australia may be eligible for the First Home Owner Grant if they are purchasing or building a new residential property such as a house, flat, unit, townhouse, or apartment. The amounts available vary between $7,000 and $15,000. Unfortunately, the First Home Owner Grant is not available for established homes from July 1, 2014, but purchases of established homes from July 1, 2000 to November 21, 2012 can receive $7,000, while the buyers of homes established between November 22, 2012 and June 30, 2014 can receive $5,000.
A $10,000 grant is available to buyers in Western Australia who are purchasing or building a new home, however homes that have been substantially renovated may be eligible if the home is consequently considered a new home. Western Australia also offers a $5,000 boost payment to first home buyers who enter into a contract between January 1 and June 30, 2017 for the construction or purchase of a new home. Construction commencement and completion date terms and conditions apply. This boost payment is also available to owner builders, and purchasers buying off the plan subject to satisfying the eligibility criteria.
The $10,000 First Home Owner Grant in the Northern Territory is available to those buying or building a new home. The Northern Territory also introduced the BuildBonus in February, 2019 to assist first home buyers building their new home. The $20,000 BuildBonus is only available to the first 600 applications for home buyers who have entered into a contract to build or buy a home, or have started construction as an owner builder on or after February 8, 2019. The Territory home owner discount of $18,601 off stamp duty is also available to first home buyers purchasing an established home, a new home, or land to build a new home in the Northern Territory.
Changes have also been made to the First Home Super Saver Scheme offered by the Australian Taxation Office. These changes apply retrospectively to valid FHSS release requests and contracts entered into on or after July 1, 2018. The FHSS can only be applied to homes purchased in Australia. Buyers no longer have to wait until the first FHSS amount is released to them to sign a contract to purchase or construct their new home. They will also have 12 months from the date a valid release request is made to either sign a contract to purchase or construct a home and notify the ATO within 28 days of signing, or recontribute the assessable FHSS amount (less tax withheld) into your super and notify the ATO within 12 months of the valid release request date.
Each state and territory First Home Owner Grant and bonus payments within Australia are subject to further terms and conditions, and further eligibility criteria, so check with your State Revenue Office to find out more information. The Hotondo Homes website also features a First Home Buyers section with a wealth of information to help you through the process of purchasing your first home.
Hotondo Homes is not a registered financial advisory and therefore we recommend you speak to your financial advisor or mortgage broker to receive expert advice before you enter into a real estate contract of sale.