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How to claim the government’s new HomeBuilder grant

How to claim the government’s new HomeBuilder grant

The federal government is giving eligible Australians a $25,000 HomeBuilder grant towards building their new home or substantially renovating their existing homes. The grant scheme has been announced as an effort to boost demand in the construction sector, and keep builders and tradespeople employed as the country braces for an economic downturn as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Master Builder’s Association has welcomed the package which will provide a huge relief for the construction sector, warning that without assistance contracts could be expected to fall by 40 per cent. But the HomeBuilder grant isn’t the only scheme helping Australian first home buyers, who can claim other financial grants depending on the state and territory they live in. 

Do I qualify for the HomeBuilder grant?

The HomeBuilder scheme grants $25,000 to eligible homeowners who are committed to spending at least $150,000 of their own money on building a new home or significantly renovating their current home to improve its livability. The grant does not apply to investment properties or owners who intend on renovating or building without the help of professional and licensed builders. Before being eligible for the grant, you must pay the first installment of works that must cost at least $150,000. 

The HomeBuilder grant also excludes couples making more than $200,000 per year and individuals making more than $125,000 per year. Limits are also placed on the value of the property with new builds capped at $750,000 and renovations can cost between $150,000 and $750,000. The value of the property being built or renovated must also be valued at less than $1.5 million. The HomeBuilder grant is available for six months from today until New Year’s Eve. 

What renovation work qualifies for the Home Builder grant?

The renovation work that qualifies and meets the criteria for the HomeBuilder grant must improve the accessibility, safety and livability of your property. This means that renovations will not be eligible if they are separate structures from your home such as swimming pools, saunas, tennis courts, garages and sheds.

How much can first home buyers claim from all government homeowner schemes?

While the HomeBuilder grant is available across all of Australia, how much you can claim including other home buyer schemes depends on which state or territory you live in. Here’s what you can claim in each state and territory to put towards buying and renovating your first home or building a new first home: 

New South Wales

  • First homeowner’s grant: $10,000
  • Commonwealth first Home Loan Deposit Scheme: up to $10,000
  • With HomeBuilder: access up to $45,000
  • First home buyers are exempt from paying all or some stamp duty on properties valued up to $800,000
  • Visit the NSW Government’s first homebuyer website for further information. 

Victoria

  • First homeowner’s grant: $10,000-$20,000. The $10,000 grant is for homes in urban areas while the $20,000 is for homes in regional Victoria. All homes can only be valued up to $750,000 and must have been built within the last five years.
  • Commonwealth first Home Loan Deposit Scheme: up to $10,000
  • With HomeBuilder: access up to between $45,000 and $55,000
  • First home buyers are exempt from paying stamp duty on properties valued up to $600,000, and a concession is available for properties valued between $601,000 and $750,000. 
  • Visit the first homeowner website for further information. 

Queensland

  • First homeowner’s grant: $15,000
  • Commonwealth first Home Loan Deposit Scheme: up to $10,000
  • With HomeBuilder: access up to $50,000
  • For more information on eligibility, visit the Queensland Government’s first homeowner grant website

Tasmania

  • First homeowner’s grant: up to $20,000
  • Commonwealth first Home Loan Deposit Scheme: up to $10,000
  • With HomeBuilder: access up to $55,000
  • Tasmania provides a 50 per cent discount on property transfer duty for first home buyers of established homes, which have a dutiable value of $400 000 or less. Visit the Tasmanian Government’s first homeowners’ website for more information. 

Northern Territory

  • First homeowners grant: $10,000
  • Commonwealth first Home Loan Deposit Scheme: up to $10,000
  • With HomeBuilder: access up to $45,000
  • For more information on the Northern Territory’s homeowner assistance schemes, visit their website

Australian Capital Territory

  • Commonwealth first Home Loan Deposit Scheme: up to $10,000
  • With HomeBuilder: access up to $35,000
  • The Homebuyer Concession Scheme means first home buyers in the ACT pay no duty if your household income is below or between $160,000 and $176,650. This number varies on the number of dependents. Visit the government’s home buyers assistance website for more information. 

South Australia

  • First homeowner’s grant: $15,000
  • Commonwealth first Home Loan Deposit Scheme: up to $10,000
  • With HomeBuilder: access up to $50,000
  • Visit the government’s first homeowners website for further information. 

Western Australia

  • First homeowner’s grant: $10,000
  • Commonwealth first Home Loan Deposit Scheme: up to $10,000
  • With HomeBuilder: access up to $45,000
  • Visit the WA Government’s first homeowner grant website for more information.

Be sure to check your eligibility for all available government and bank schemes as you may be able to save thousands of dollars on the purchase of your first home. 

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Tara Searle

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