Australia’s housing market values can be intimidating for many first home buyers across Australia at the best of times. Over the years, the government has made available a range of assistance programs and concession schemes.
These programs and schemes may differ depending on the purpose of the purchase and the financial situation of the home buyer but were all created to make the process more accessible.
Stamp duty concessions and exemptions
One of the biggest upfront costs associated with buying property is stamp duty. First home buyers may be eligible for stamp duty concessions or exemptions, depending on the value of the property they intend to purchase and the state or territory the property resides in. See our state-by-state guide for further information.
If you’re looking to buy in a capital city such as Sydney or Melbourne, stamp duty costs can climb into the tens of thousands of dollars range. However, eligible first home buyers in New South Wales (NSW) now have the option of paying an upfront stamp duty or an annual land tax that’s based on their property’s value.
Eliminating the obligation of stamp duty reduces up-front costs for first home buyers and, depending on your home’s value over time and the implications of future legislative changes, may save you thousands of dollars, particularly if you have intentions of selling your home within a particular time frame. The scheme came into effect 16 January 2023.
First Home Loan Deposit Scheme (FHLDS)
The First Home Loan Deposit Scheme (FHLDS) was created to support borrowers with deposits below the “ideal” 20% mark to purchase property without having to pay costly Lender’s Mortgage Insurance (LMI).
As property prices have climbed significantly in the last decade, saving a 20% deposit can be unrealistic for many first-time buyers. Instead, through this scheme the government acts as a guarantor, supporting a loan application with a deposit as little as 5%.
Family Home Guarantee
Similar to the FHLDS, the Family Home Guarantee supports single parents with deposits as low as 2% to meet eligibility criteria to qualify for a home loan and avoid paying LMI. There is an income cap of $125,000.
First Home Super Saver Scheme (FHSSS)
The First Home Super Saver Scheme (FHSSS) allows eligible home buyers to make additional contributions into their super fund, with the intent that these funds and any returns be put towards a property deposit.
For more information on first home buyer programs and schemes, you can consult our comprehensive guide.