Buying your first home can be a daunting experience, as it’s probably one of the biggest purchases you’ll ever make.
So, to support you in your first home buyer journey, the Australian Government has launched (as of 1 January 2020) the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme. This scheme is a government guarantee designed to help first home buyers on low and middle incomes to purchase their first home a little sooner.
The good news is that we’ve been approved by the Australian Government as a First Home Loan Deposit Scheme lender by the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation (NHFIC) to offer you this new option.
As a member-owned lender it’s our purpose to provide you with better banking products, and being chosen as an approved lender is another reflection of how we can provide this benefit to first home buyers like you.
What is the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme?
As a first home buyer, the scheme is designed to support you by providing a guarantee to your bank that allows you to use a deposit of as little as 5 percent when buying your first home.
Normally, anyone purchasing a property will need to save a 20% deposit (based on the property value) in order to avoid forking out extra to pay for Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI). Taking advantage of the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme will allow you to bypass Lenders Mortgage Insurance without having to stress about providing an extra 15% in your deposit.
As a first home buyer you can use the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme in combination with a few other government programs like the First Home Super Saver Scheme, state and territory First Home Owner Grants and stamp duty concessions. However, you will need to keep in mind that only 10,000 first home loan guarantees are available through the NHFIC every financial year.
Am I eligible?
If you’re a first home buyer looking to take advantage of the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme you will need to follow the application process to find out if you are eligible. Use this tool developed by NHFIC to help you work out if you meet the eligibility criteria .
The eligibility criteria will relate to:
- Income thresholds
- These will be up to $125,000 per annum for singles and up to $200,000 per annum for couples (assessed in the financial year preceding the financial year in which the loan is entered into).
- Couples will only be eligible if they are in a de-facto relationship or married.
- Property prices
- The Scheme is only available for modest homes (a list of the allowable property types is shown below) and will be subject to property price thresholds. For Queensland the price cap will be up to $475,000 for capital cities and regional centres (Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast) and up to $400,000 for other areas in Queensland. For the full list of property price thresholds see here.
- To find out the property price threshold of a suburb you a looking to buy in you can try the NHFIC tool here.
- You must have a deposit of between 5 and 20 per cent of the property’s value.
- You must reside in the property as your principal place of residence (i.e. you must be an owner occupier) within six months from the date of settlement or, if later, the date an occupancy certificate is issued, and continue to live in that property for as long as your home loan has a guarantee under the Scheme.
- Loans under the Scheme require consistent scheduled repayments of the principal of the loan for the full period of the agreement. If the loan is used to purchase both vacant land for the construction of a house on the land, the loan may be an eligible loan even if the terms of the loan agreement permit interest-only repayments for a specified period.
- First home buyers only
- You must be a first home buyer who has not previously owned or had an interest in a property either separately or jointly with someone else.
What kind of property can I buy under the Scheme?
You can buy:
Each property has relevant dates and requirements when it comes to applying for the Scheme, so visit here for more information.
How do I apply?
Applications will be open from 1 February 2020 and can be lodged through Queensland Country Bank and our approved brokers. You can register your interest by completing the form below and one of our Home Loan Specialists will be in touch with you shortly.
Please note that NHFIC will not accept applications directly.
Register Your Interest Here
First Home Owners Grant
The First Home Owner Grant (FHOG) scheme was introduced in July 2000 to offset the cost of GST when you buy your first home. The national scheme varies from state-to-state as it's funded by the states and territories and administered under their own legislation.
Under the scheme, first home buyers will be given a one-off grant once all eligibility criteria is met.
Stamp Duty Concessions
Stamp Duty is a tax applied to property transactions (including home and land packages, land or investment property) that is charged differently by each state and territory. To find out the stamp duty for the state you are interested in buying in, see here.
Depending on your state or territory you may be eligible for a concession on stamp duty if you are a first home buyer.
The First Home Super Saver Scheme
The First Home Super Saver (FHSS) scheme allows you to save for a home loan deposit on your first home using your super fund. This scheme allows first home buyers to save faster with the concessional tax treatment of superannuation.
First home buyers can then withdraw on the volunatry funds saved within the scheme and put it towards their first home. More information can be found via the ATO's website here.