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How to get the $25,000 HomeBuilder grant

How to get the HomeBuilder grant. Source: Getty

The government revealed last week it would give Aussies that build a new home or renovate their own a $25,000 handout as part of its $688 million HomeBuilder scheme.

The grant is complementary to existing state and territory first home owner grants, stamp duty concessions and the government’s First Home Loan Deposit scheme, as well as the First Home Super Saver scheme. 

But HomeBuilder was widely criticised by the Labor Party, which said there weren’t “many battlers” in Australia that would meet the strict criteria of the scheme. 

Here’s exactly who is eligible for the scheme, and how to apply:

Am I eligible for HomeBuilder?

According to the Treasury’s website, to access HomeBuilder, you must be an owner-occupier and meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • You must be aged 18 years or older;

  • You are an Australian citizen; and

  • You earn up to $125,000 per annum as a single, or $200,000 as a couple.

What are the building constraints for HomeBuilder?

To access the grant, your build needs to adhere to some constraints too. You must enter into a building contract between 4 June 2020 and 31 December 2020 to either:

  • Build a new home as a principal place of residence, where the property value does not exceed $750,000; or

  • Substantially renovate your existing home as a principal place of residence, where the renovation contract is between $150,000 and $750,000, and where the value of your existing property does not exceed $1.5 million; and

  • Construction must commence within three months of the contract date.

The renovation or building work must be also undertaken by a registered or licenced building service ‘contractor’ - so that means no DIY projects.

How do I apply for HomeBuilder?

When the state or territory you live in signs the National Partnership Agreement, it can begin to distribute the HomeBuilder payments to those who apply. 

These applications will be backdated to 4 June 2020, and information on when and how you can access the HomeBuilder grant will become available through your relevant state or territory revenue office. 

Who misses out on the HomeBuilder scheme?

Owner-builders and those seeking to build a new home or renovate an existing home as an investment property won’t be able to access the HomeBuilder grant. 

Also, the contract must be made between two parties “freely and independently” of each other, which means if your relative is a builder, they can’t undertake the build.

The renovation works must also be to improve the accessibility, safety and liveability of the dwelling.

So, if you’re wanting to chuck a swimming pool or tennis court in, this grant also won’t apply to you.

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