The 4 F's when it comes to your First Home

18 min read
You might have heard that there are a few different government schemes to help you buy your first home.
There’s actually four! If you’re an Australian citizen, these schemes could help you get your foot in the property market, and we’ve explained them all for you.
And yes, you can combine the schemes if you are eligible for more than one. You can even use all four!
What could I be eligible for?
Who this is suitable for
FHLDS
FHSSS
FHOGS
FHBDS
You only have savings equivalent to the value of a 5% home deposit (minimum)
You want to save for your first home deposit tax effectively
You want to buy a newly constructed or off the plan home
You are buying any home
You earn less than $125k/year
No income limits
No income limits
No income limits
Value of the home is less than $700k (value varies based on state)
No home value limits
Value of the home is less than $750k (dependent on state)
Value of home is less than $800k (dependent on state)
Other eligibility criteria apply, check out the relevant government websites for the FHLDS, FHSSS and FHOGS. Eligibility for the FHBDS varies by state, see the relevant state websites: NSW, VIC, QLD, ACT, SA, WA, NT, TAS.

First Home Loan Deposit Scheme

WHAT IT IS: The government acts as a guarantor, allowing eligible first home buyers to purchase a home with only a 5% deposit.
HOW YOU BENEFIT: Generally, if you have a deposit of less than 20%, you will need to pay Lender’s Mortgage Insurance (LMI) or have a guarantor who places a portion of their own home’s value as security. This is security for the bank, in case you can’t pay back your loan. With this scheme, you won’t have to pay LMI or find a guarantor if you have a 5% deposit.
Based on calculations using Your Mortgage's LMI calculator in March 2020, if you bought a $600,000 property with a 5% deposit ($30,000) you would have to pay $25,365 for LMI. This scheme could save you the cost of LMI.
THE FINE PRINT: The Scheme will only support up to 10,000 loans each financial year, starting from 1 January 2020. There are caps on the maximum value of the house based on location. Check your area here. To be eligible, your taxable income must be less than $125,000 per annum for singles and below $200,000 per annum for couples.

First Home Super Saver Scheme

WHAT IT IS: Take advantage of the growth and tax benefits of super to save for your first home deposit within your super account. You can personally contribute up to $15k per year up to a total of $30k into your super account.
HOW YOU BENEFIT: According to the government, for most people, the FHSSS could boost the savings they can put towards a deposit by at least 30 per cent compared with saving through a standard deposit account.1
  1. Earn more money – money saved using the First Home Super Saver Scheme generally earns higher interest than you’d earn in a savings account. – 3.91% vs 0.75% p.a.2 Your money in super is also invested, any earnings above the deemed rate of return stay in your super account for the future. And, in 2019 our High Growth investment option returned 22.07%3! Find out more about our investment options.
  2. Save tax – Super is generally taxed at 15%, compared to your personal income tax rate which could be as high as 47%!
THE FINE PRINT: Per person, the maximum amount you can withdraw is $30,000 for your first home deposit, plus the interest earned, less any taxes. If you purchase the first home as a couple, it could be up to $60,000. You need to apply to the ATO for a determination before you sign, and request your money to be released within two weeks of signing a contract.

First Home Owner Grant Scheme

WHAT IT IS: Get $7,000 - $20,000 towards your deposit if buying newly built or off the plan home.
HOW YOU BENEFIT: This scheme provides a grant to eligible first home buyers who purchase newly-built or off the plan, or are building a brand new home.
THE FINE PRINT: The grant varies by state, and so does the eligibility criteria for the value of the home. In NSW, for example, the newly constructed home must be valued under than $750,000. Check your state here.
State
Grant
Maximum Value of House
NSW
$10,000
Valued at less than $750,000
VIC
$10,000
Valued at less than $750,000
ACT
$7,000
Valued at less than $750,000
QLD
$15,000
Valued at less than $750,000
SA
$15,000
Valued at less than $575,000
WA
$10,000
Valued at less than $1,000,000
NT
$10,000
-
TAS
$20,000
-

First Home Buyer Deposit Assistance

WHAT IT IS: Save on stamp/transfer duty.
HOW YOU BENEFIT: This assistance provides full or partial exemptions on stamp duty tax if you purchase your first home below a certain value. Stamp duty is tax that you pay when the purchase or sale of a property occurs.
THE FINE PRINT: As stamp duty taxes differ in each state, you will need to check for your state. The amount you’ll have to pay will be based on the value of your home. If the value of your home exceeds the limit for full exemption of stamp duty, you can apply for a partial exemption.
For example, in NSW, you can get a full stamp duty exemption if the property is valued under $650,000. So, if your first home is $600k, you can save up to $22,4324 in stamp duty fees when claiming this assistance.

Ready to get started? Start saving for your first home today with Professional Super!

References

  1. Source: https://treasury.gov.au/sites/default/files/2019-03/Post-passage_fact_sheet_-_First_home.pdf
  2. As at January 2020 the earnings rate for First Home Super Saver Scheme withdrawals is 3.91%, which we compared to the RBA’s cash rate of 0.75%, which is assumed to be equal to the interest earned on a bank account.
  3. Returns are after percentage based administration fees and taxes have been taken out from unit prices, but before flat dollar administration fees have been deducted from individual accounts. Investment returns are historical and past performance is not necessarily indicative of future performance. Return of capital and the performance of your investment is not guaranteed.
  4. Stamp duty for NSW has been calculated using the Revenue NSW transfer of land or business calculator in March 2020.
This is general information only and does not take account of your individual investment objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on it, consider if the information is appropriate and whether you need to speak to an accredited professional.
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