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Single Parents & More - A Comprehensive Look At Government Property Buyer Schemes

Single Parents & More - A Comprehensive Look At Government Property Buyer Schemes

The 2021 Federal Budget is out and single parents struggling to get a foot on the property ladder are in luck, with a new scheme introduced that may allow them to purchase property with a deposit of only 2 per cent.

This scheme, called the Family Home Guarantee, will see the remaining 18 per cent of a home loan deposit needed to avoid Lender’s Mortgage Insurance (LMI) guaranteed by the Federal Government.

Family Home Guarantee will be available for up to 10,000 single parents with dependants over four years, as of 1 July 2021. The scheme is available to those with a household income under $125,000

As property prices have continued to grow across the country, particularly in Sydney and Melbourne, the cost of a deposit has continued to slip out of many would-be buyers hands.

For example, based on the latest CoreLogic data showing a median-priced Sydney unit to be $771,859, a buyer would need to save at least $154,371 for a 20 per cent deposit. This doesn’t include the cost of stamp duty, as well as other mortgage application costs.

This scheme is similar to other buyer support schemes, such as the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme, in that the government is helping buyers struggling to afford 20 per cent deposits

Government property buyer schemes available

While the Family Home Guarantee may help single parents, it’s not the only government scheme available. Australians looking to buy may have other options from the government, including property purchasing schemes, grants, concessions, and exemptions that may be available to would-be buyers.

1.Family Home Guarantee

Available for single parents with an income cap of $125,000, the Family Home Guarantee helps applicants with deposits as small as 2 per cent meet eligibility criteria to qualify for a home loan. The guarantee is available from 1 July 2021, with only 10,000 places available over the next four years.

2.First Home Loan Deposit Scheme (FHLDS)

This government initiative specifically targets first home buyers. Similar to the Family Home Guarantee, it supports buyers with deposits under 20 per cent (up to 5 per cent) to purchase property without having to pay LMI. Here, the Australian government also acts as a guarantor.

Key conditions for FHLDS include income caps of $125,000 per annum, capped at $200,000 for couples), with enrolment into the FHLDS capped at 10,000 per financial year. As per the latest Federal Budget announcements this week, the scheme has been extended by another 10,000 places in 2021-2022.

3. First Home Super Saver Scheme (FHSSS)

Another scheme targeted at first home buyers, FHSSS allows eligible home buyers to make extra contributions into their super fund with intent to be used towards a property deposit. Previously, first home buyers could withdraw up to $30,000, however the latest Federal Budget has revealed the scheme will be increased to $50,000 from 1 July, 2022.

As interest rates are at an historic low across savings accounts and term deposits, using your super fund to try and take advantage of higher rates of return may prove to be a faster option than waiting for your deposit to grow in a saver account.

4. First Home Owner Grant

One of the original home buyer schemes, originally introduced on 1 July 2000 to offset the effect of GST on home ownership, First Home Owner Grants differ per Australian state or territory. A one-off grant is paid to eligible first home buyers, with conditions around property values and residential requirements common.

5. Stamp duty concessions and exemptions

Stamp duty is one of the biggest upfront costs associated with purchasing property outside of the deposit, so it’s beneficial that struggling first home buyers are offered assistance in this category too. First home buyers may be eligible for stamp duty concessions or exemptions depending on a range of factors, including the state or territory of the purchased property and the value of the property.

What first home buyer assistance do I qualify for in my state or territory?

As mentioned above, the First Home Owner Grant and stamp duty concessions and exemptions differ per state and territory in Australia.

Here is what your state or territory is currently offering first home buyers:

STATE OR TERRITORYFirst Home Owner GrantStamp Duty ConcessionsStamp Duty Exemptions
New South Wales$10,000 towards purchase price. Must be buying or building your first home. Not for existing dwellings. Value cap of $750,000New home: $800,000 - $1,000,000.

Existing home: $650,000 - $800,000. Waived rate based on value of home

New home: up to $800,000

Existing home: up to $650,000

ACTN/AValue of property: $500,000 and above - off the plan units up to $11,400 stamp duty reduction.Value of property: up to $500,000 for off the plan units, full exemption for single resident dwelling blocks.
Victoria$20,000 for regional property, $10,000 towards non-regional property. Value cap of $750,000Value of property: $600,001 - $750,000. Waived rate based on value of home.Exemption for property value up to $600,000
Queensland$15,000 for new purchases and constructions up to $750,000Home concession—when buying another home after your first home.

First home concession—the lower home concession rate of duty plus a further rebate that may result in you paying no duty (when you have never owned a home before)

First home vacant land concession— the normal rate of duty plus a further rebate that may result in you paying no duty (when buying land to build your first home)

Exemption from transfer duty on transactions involving a transfer of an interest in your home to your spouse or change of tenure between joint tenants and tenants in common manufactured home.
South AustraliaUp to $15,000 for new purchases and constructions less than $575,000N/AN/A
Tasmania$20,000 if building new residence or purchasing new build.Established home: concession of 50%, Value of $400 000 or less.​​​Duty exemptions available when property is transferred between partners in a marriage, a significant relationship or a caring relationship.
Western Australia$10,000 for new purchases. Property prices capped at $750,000 for South of the 26th parallel and $1m for north of the 26th parallelValue of property: $430,001 - $500,000 - $19.19 per $100 above $430,000Value of property: up to $430,000
Northern Territory$10,000 if building new residence or purchasing new build.Value of property: up to $650,000 - $18,601 off stamp duty. Available until 30 June 2021.Value of property: up to $650,000 - $18,601 off stamp duty. Available until 30 June 2021.

Source: RateCity.com.au, State Revenue Websites for each state and territory. Data accurate as of 13.05.2021.

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This article was reviewed by Head of Content Leigh Stark before it was published as part of RateCity's Fact Check process.

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