First Home Owner Grant: Are You Eligible?

2 min read

Are you a first home buyer in Sydney? There are various schemes introduced by the government to help you purchase your home. One such first home buyer assistance scheme is First Home Owner Grant (FHOG). 

The First Home Owner Grant (FHOG) scheme was introduced on 1 July 2000 to offset the effect of the GST on homeownership. It is a national scheme funded by the states and territories and administered under their legislation.

Under the scheme, a one-off grant is payable to first homeowners that satisfy all the eligibility criteria. It provides financial assistance to eligible first home buyers in Sydney for their first new or substantially renovated home.

Eligibility Criteria

Regardless of your state of residence, there are a few qualifying ground rules to be aware of with this first home buyer assistance scheme. The most common include:

  1. You must be an individual, not a company or trust.
  2. You must be over 18.
  3. You, or at least one person you’re buying with, must be an Australian citizen or permanent resident.
  4. You, or one of the other first-time homebuyers who purchase with you, must move into the new home within 12 months of buying it and live there for at least six continuous months.
  5. If you’re buying land and building a new home, you must move in within 12 months of construction being completed.

You will not be eligible for the FHOG if you or your spouse have:

  1. Previously owned or co-owned a home in Australia; or
  2. Previously received an Australian first homeowner grant.

Before you apply for a first homeowner grant, it is better to take care of the following things:

Confirm the current eligibility criteria for the first homeowner grant in your particular area, check your state revenue office website, or visit the government’s guide.

Stamp Duty Calculator 

Under the First Home Buyer Assistance Scheme, savings on stamp duty are available to first homeowners no matter whether you buy a new or established home.

From 1 August 2020, the NSW government has announced that stamp duty will not apply to first home buyers for new properties valued up to $800,000 and vacant land valued up to $400,000. Additionally, a concessional rate of duty will apply to homes valued at more than $800,000 but less than $1,000,000 and vacant blocks of land valued at more than $400,000 and less than $500,000. This stamp duty exemption will be in place for 12 months to 31 July 2021.

From 1 August 2021, the stamp duty calculator will work on exemptions that will revert to $650,000 for homes and $350,000 for land. You can still be entitled to savings on stamp duty even if you pay between $650,000 and $800,000 for your first home. The cost of duty rises on a sliding scale. For example, if you pay $700,000, according to your stamp duty calculator, you’ll pay $10,402.33 – a saving of $16,304.67. If your first home costs $795,000, the cost will be $30,166.77, providing a saving of $815.23.

Hiring a skilled mortgage broker will be invaluable if you are a first home buyer in Sydney. Connect with us today and book a free appointment with our best brokers.

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