Venturing into the property market can be an exciting prospect and being able to call that picture-perfect property “home” is enough to entice many Australians to begin their journey. However, the constant rise of house prices in Australia has put this dream out of reach for many people. However, as the COVID-19 pandemic hit the Australian economy, the negative impact it had on the housing market has perhaps created positive opportunities for those who are longing to get their foot in the door.
Statistics from the Housing Industry Association reported by Domain show that new home sales fell by 20.3% in the three months leading up to May 2020. Project cancellations also hit a high of 26%, compared to the typical range of 7-9%. So, to stimulate the residential construction sector, the Australian Government has introduced the HomeBuilder Grant.
This grant will provide eligible owner-occupiers, including first home buyers, with a grant of $25,000 to build a new home or substantially renovate an existing home. This will help the residential construction market bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic by encouraging the commencement of new home builds and renovations. Whether you’re looking to build your dream home or renovate an existing property, this could be the extra hand you need to tick that goal off your bucket list. Below is more information about the HomeBuilder Grant:
What are the criteria?
- You are a natural person (not a company or trust).
- You are aged 18 years or older.
- You are an Australian citizen.
- You meet one of the following two income caps:
o Individual: $125,000 per annum for an individual applicant based on your 2018-19 tax return or later.
o Couple: $200,000 per annum for a couple based on both 2018-19 tax returns or later.
- You enter into a building contract between 4 June 2020 and 31 December 2020 to either:
o Build: Build a new home as a principal place of residence, where the property value (house and land) does not exceed $750,000, or
o Renovate: Substantially renovate your existing home as a principal place of residence, where the renovation contract is between $150,000 and $750,000, and where the value of your existing property (house and land) does not exceed $1.5 million.
- Construction must commence within three months of the contract date.
Please note that owner-builders and those seeking to build the following properties will not be eligible for the HomeBuilder grant:
- A new home which will be used as an investment property.
- Renovate an existing home which is an investment property.
I am not a first home buyer; can I access the HomeBuilder Grant?
Yes. Provided you meet the eligibility criteria, you can apply for a HomeBuilder Grant. However, HomeBuilder is not available for investment properties.
What types of dwellings are eligible under the HomeBuilder Grant?
As long as the contract is for a new build or a substantial renovation to an existing dwelling, all dwelling types are eligible. Examples include:
- House and land package
What renovations will be eligible?
- Renovations must improve the accessibility, liveability or safety of the property, and can be a combination of works. For example, a kitchen and bathroom renovation. However, the grants can’t be used for renovations that are not connected to the principle place of residence, such as building a tennis courts, pools and sheds.
- Renovations must be completed by a licenced or registered builder (depending on the state or territory).
- Any building or renovation contract entered into must be made by two parties that are free and independent of each other. The terms of the contract should be commercially reasonable, and the contract price should not be inflated compared to the fair market price.
The HomeBuilder Grant will not only assist the residential construction sectors, but it also helps Australians begin their journey into the property market. If you would like to take advantage of this grant, get in touch with our trusted partner, FutureNow Finance who can help you through the application process. Email Sarah at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 1300 013 730.
Once the build or renovation of your dream home is underway, feel free to get in touch with us at East West Insurance Brokers so we can help you find an appropriate insurance policy to protect your hard-earned assets.
1800 809 132
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