Buying your first home in South Australia is an exciting achievement, but it can also seem like a financial challenge. The Victorian Government, recognizing this challenge, offers valuable financial support to first-time homebuyers. However, understanding and navigating the criteria can be hard.
This guide will walk you through the various initiatives, incentives, and programs designed to make the dream of home ownership a reality for aspiring homeowners in Victoria.
We will also look at the eligibility requirements and property categories that qualify for the grant, ensuring you’re well-prepared to embark on your homeownership journey.
Are You Qualified for the South Australian First Home Owner Grant?
The eligibility criteria for this grant involves the following requirements:
You must be 18 years or older when you sign the contract.
Citizenship or Permanent Residency
For the First Home Owner Grant, it’s necessary that at least one of the initial homebuyers is either an Australian citizen or holds permanent residency (i.e must be a permanent resident of Australia).
Make sure to apply as an individual rather than through a company or trust.
No Previous Property Ownership
You and your spouse or partner should not have owned a home in Australia before.
If it was an investment property bought after July 1, 2000, it mustn’t have been lived in for six months or more.
No Previous First Home Buyer Scheme or First Home Owner Grant
Both you and your spouse or partner must not have previously obtained a first home buyer grant or first home owners grant in Australia.
In terms of residence, one of the first home buyers should plan to make the new home their primary residence within a year of purchase and reside there for a minimum of 6 months without any extended breaks.
An Australian Defence Force personnel can request an exemption from this rule by submitting a written application to RevenueSA.
Eligibility Criteria for Properties: To qualify for the first home owner grant, your property must fall into one of these categories:
Newly Built Property
This covers a brand-new house, apartment, flat, or townhouse built to meet South Australia’s planning rules.
A new home is defined as one that has never been occupied or previously sold as a place of residence.
Substantially Renovated Home
A substantially renovated entails a significant replacement or rebuilding of most or all of the house, after which it is put up for sale as a residential property for the first time.
Land and Building Package
This means you’re purchasing a package that includes both vacant land and the construction of a new home on that land (i .e House and Land Packages) .
You can also qualify if you’re buying vacant land with the intention of building a new home on it.
Off the Plan Concession for House and Land Purchases
The off-the-plan concession helps eligible buyers who are getting land and a building constructed or a renovated lot.
This concession lowers the property’s value by the construction or refurbishment costs incurred after the contract date, reducing the stamp duty that you have to pay.
To get this concession, your seller needs to fill out the Digital Duties Form and share the required info.
There are two methods to calculate this concession: the fixed percentage approach or the alternative method, and your seller chooses one of them.
About six months before your property settles, your seller tells your conveyancer or solicitor the property’s dutiable value with the off-the-plan concession.
If you want to estimate your property’s duty, ask your conveyancer or solicitor for this value.
- For contracts signed before July 1, 2017:
The concession works for all property types, even for investment or commercial use.
The concession might still apply if you name a new buyer after July 1, 2017.
- For contracts signed on or after July 1, 2017:
The off-the-plan concession is only available if you qualify for the principal place of residence concession or the first-home buyer duty exemption/concession.
This implies that you are purchasing a home intended to be your primary residence, and you must reside in it continuously for 12 months, beginning within 12 months of taking possession, typically at settlement.
You must also meet one of the following conditions:
- To qualify for a first home buyer duty exemption or concession, your property’s value, after considering the off-the-plan concession, must remain under $750,000.
- If you’re seeking the principal place of residence concession, ensure that your property’s value, after applying the off-the-plan concession, doesn’t surpass $550,000.
In case you go beyond these limits, the duty will be determined based on the contract price.
Failure to meet the residence requirement will result in a reassessment of the transfer at the contract price and the removal of all concessions or exemptions.
Victorian Homebuyer Fund Shared Equity Scheme
The Victorian Homebuyer Fund operates as a partnership in which the government provides financial assistance to individuals looking to purchase homes.
In return, the government gets a share of the property, and participants can gradually buy it back over time.
Under this scheme, eligible participants receive a government contribution of up to 25 percent of the home’s purchase price.
To take part, participants need to put down at least 5 percent of the purchase price and pay for other costs like stamp duty and conveyancing fees. They can secure the remaining funds through a home loan from a partnering lender.
Special assistance is available for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participants.
Participants commit to repurchasing the government’s stake in their property gradually, which can be achieved through refinancing, savings, or property sale.
Know that the Victorian Government does not charge interest on its share in participants’ homes. However, it does share in any gains or losses based on its share of the property.
This guide has provided valuable insights into everything you need to know to be open to opportunities as a first time home owner in Victoria.
The First Home Owner Grant covers a diverse range of property options while the off-the-plan concession offers a fantastic opportunity for those looking to make their primary residence more affordable.
Lastly, the Victorian Homebuyer Fund Shared Equity Scheme extends a supportive hand by contributing to home purchases.
These initiatives collectively help you to make the dream of homeownership a reality for you in South Australia.
Need further Help? Contact NY Properties. They are the best at seeing you through the process of house and land purchase and home ownership and they will be glad to help you.