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If you are a first time buyer planning and plotting to dive in to the property market, this could be the right time, with plump first home owner grants being offered by several states to help beef up your finances in view of the rapidly rising property prices.

Apart from the meaty $20,000 grant sponsored by the Queensland government to help first time buyers in the state, the affordability package rolled out by the Berejiklian government in NSW has given first time home buyers good reason to rejoice, too.

Since 1 July 2017, first time buyers who purchase a newly constructed property up to $600,000 or build a new home up to $750,000 are eligible for a grant of $10,000. In addition, the state has abolished stamp duty for new or established first homes priced up to $650,000, with reduced duty on homes up to $800,000 translating into savings of up to $24,740 on a $650,000 home (calculate your stamp duty here).

The state government also takes into consideration that most buyers have small deposits, considering the soaring property prices. To bring some extra benefit to their kitty, it has waived off the insurance duty on lenders’ mortgage insurance (LMI).


The NSW First Home Owner Grant

Instead of the $5,000 New Home Grant Scheme that closed on 1 July 2017, first home buyers in NSW are now eligible for a one off payment of $10,000 for constructing a new home worth $750,000 or buying a newly constructed property valued at up to $600,000.

Note that the $10,000 grant is not available on the purchase of an established home. You can only avail the grant if purchasing a newly constructed home or building your own home.

The building contract or the purchase contract must be signed after 1 January 2016.


The NSW home affordability package at a glance:

  • A $10,000 First Home Owner Grant for first time buyers of new homes up to $600,000 and builders of new homes up to $750,000
  • Stamp duty exemption for homes up to $650,000
  • Reduced stamp duty on homes up to $800,000
  • No insurance duty on lender’s mortgage insurance
  • Transfer duty exemption if you buy a new home up to $550,000, or vacant land up to $350,000. Concessional transfer duty is applicable for new homes between $550,000 and $650,000, or vacant land between $350,000 and $450,000


When is the grant payment made?

The grant is paid at different times, depending on how you apply for the grant and the type of property you are buying. When you apply through a bank or a lending institution, you can expect the funds on the settlement date in case you are buying a new home. In the case of a construction loan, the grant will be received on the first drawdown of funds, which is usually when the slab for your home is placed. 

You can use FHOG as a part of the deposit when applying for a home loan. In general, FHOG is not sufficient for the full amount of your deposit. In most cases, you would need up to five to ten percent of the purchase price, along with FHOG, for a twenty percent deposit.

If you are struggling to save for a deposit, learn more about low deposit loans here.


Check your eligibility for the $10,000 FHOG in NSW

You can apply if:

  • You are at least 18 years old
  • You are an Australian citizen or permanent resident
  • If you’re buying with a partner or spouse, at least one of the applicants is an Australian citizen or permanent resident to qualify


What kind of property can you buy?

You must either:

  • Build your own home valued up to $750,000
  • Buy a new home that has never been lived in, valued up to $600,000

The total value of the property must be within the caps mentioned above. Note that a new home is one that has not been previously occupied or sold as a place of residence and includes a home that has been substantially renovated and a home built to replace demolished premises.

When you are building a home, this would include the cost of purchasing the land as well as the building cost.


Other conditions:

  • Neither of the applicants must have owned a property before
  • You must not have received the first home owner grant in any other State
  • You must move into the house within one year of the purchase and reside there for a continuous period of at least 6 months, failing which, you may be penalised. This qualification can be relaxed if you work in the Australian Defence Force

We advise that you are completely honest while applying for the first home owner grant. The applications are heavily scrutinised, and incorrect information could lead to rejection of your application as well as additional penalties and fines.

Visit NSW State website to know more.


How to apply for FHOG

To apply for the first home owners’ grant, you may lodge your application through your mortgage broker or download the application form and lodge it yourself after the sale process is complete. Apart from the application, you would also be required to submit other paperwork including the proof of your identity and the contract of sale. Alternately, you could directly apply through your lender as well.

Remember that the FHOG approval process is stringent and time bound, and one must not lose the benefit simply out of confusion or shying away from taking professional help. Mortgage brokers at HashChing have helped many first home buyers like you purchase their first property with significant savings on their home loans. Read Susan’s story to know more.

At HashChing, we have helped hundreds of first home buyers purchase their dream home.  Our mortgage brokers provide you most professional guidance, apart from competitive home loan deals from across Australia.

Once you get in touch, an expert will assess your eligibility for FHOG, lodging the application on your behalf, with all the supporting paperwork, in a timely manner, which will save you time and hassle, ensuring you receive the funds in time.

You can learn more about FHOG in different States here.

 

By Vidhu Bajaj
HashChing Content Writer

 

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