Good news for first home buyers in Queensland
The great Australian dream of owning your own home gained a boost in the recent Queensland state election, with an extension promised for the popular Queensland First Home Owners’ Grant.
The Queensland First Home Owners’ Grant was designed to help young people get their foot in the property door with a generous one-off payment of $20,000. A considerable sum, it is likely for many of the eligible to be more than half the usual 10% required by lenders for a deposit.
Prospective applicants for the grant were being advised to act quickly, however. The final call for those eligible with a contract to purchase or build an off-the-plan or newly constructed home valued under $750,000 to be signed before midnight on 31 December 2017.
But during the state election campaign, on 19 November 2017, the Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced a promise of an extension to the grant until midnight on 30 June 2018. While this is good news that will be welcomed by many, it is important to note that it has not yet been enacted by the government. However, as a key campaign promise, it does seems safe to say that the returning Labor state government will be very keen to keep it.
First Home Owners’ Grant: Are you eligible?
The grant is strategically designed to not only help young people into home ownership, but also to generate activity and employment in the building industries. As such, it is available only for off-the-plan or newly constructed homes, and not for existing properties.
First home buyers are urged to take advantage of it for new homes and not to wait – doubtlessly in vain – for it to be extended to existing properties. Making it available for existing homes would be an expensive and untargeted spend of government money, and effectively provide a disincentive for first home buyers – and industry – to build new homes.
Other eligibility criteria for the First Home Owners’ Grant:
- the property must be worth a maximum of $750,000
- you or your partner/co-applicant must be an Australian citizen or permanent resident
- you or your partner/co-applicant must not have previously owned property in Australia
- you and your partner/co-applicant be at least 18 years of age.
In more good news, other incentives do exist for those not taking the option of off-the-plan or newly constructed homes.
If you are buying an established home, for example, you may be eligible for the Queensland First Home Buyers Stamp Duty Rebate of up to $8750.
And if you are buying vacant land, you may be eligible for a Stamp Duty Rebate of up to $7175.
Contact Spot On Conveyancing today for an obligation-free discussion about how we can help you make the transition to owning property.