A State-by-State Guide to the First Home Owners Grant

Discussing with client state-by-state guide to the First Home Owners Grant

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Key Takeaway Table

Key Point Description
Definition
The First Home Owner Grant is a nationwide scheme to encourage homeownership in Australia. If you are eligible, you will receive a one-time payment from your state government, which can help with the significant expenses of buying or building your first home.
General Eligibility Criteria
The basic criteria for FHOG are the same across all territories. All applicants must be 18 years old and older, and they must be natural persons and not a company or a trust. Applicants must have never owned a residential home before and have never received the FHOG.
FHOG State-by-State
Each state in Australia except ACT implements FHOG differently. They have different grant amounts, property value caps, residency requirements, and other regulations you must follow. To find out if you’re entitled to FHOG, check your state’s rules and regulations.

If you’re purchasing or building a home for the first time in Australia, you may be eligible for the First Home Owner Grant (FHOG). The FHOG was first introduced in 2000 as a way to encourage home ownership by helping with the significant expenses of buying a home. If you fit the eligibility criteria, you can receive a one-time payment from your state government. Each state has different criteria, rules, and requirements for the FHOG, so if you’re in the process of buying a home, it’s crucial to check what your state offers. Here’s a comprehensive guide to FHOG depending on your state.

General Eligibility Criteria

Each state may have different rules and requirements for the FHOG, but some basic criteria remain constant across all territories. In general, here are the criteria all FHOG applicants must meet:

You can write to your state commissioner if you are below the age of 18 or if you’re applying as a trustee for a person with a disability. You may be given an exemption depending on the commissioner’s discretion. You should also write to your commissioner if you cannot fulfil the residency requirement of your state. You must write before the required timeframe is over, and you must present a valid reason.

State-by-State Guide to the FHOG

Here’s a comprehensive guide to the First Home Owner Grant by state, focusing on the key aspects of each grant available across Australia as of 2024:

StateNew South Wales (NSW)Northern TerritoryQueensland
Grant Amount$10,000$10,000$30,000 for contracts signed/laid foundations between 20 November 2023 and 30 June 2025
Property Price Cap$600,000 for a new home or $750,000 including the land for a home to be builtNone$750,000
Eligible PropertiesProperties must be newly constructed or about to be constructed. It’s important that the property has never been sold or occupied prior to the application. NSW also accepts significantly renovated homes, provided that most of the home has been replaced, no one has lived in the home, and it is the first time the home has been sold since renovationsProperties must be newly constructed or about to be constructed either by a contractor or by the owner-builder. The property must have never been sold or occupied before the application. NT also accepts significantly renovated homesThe property must be a new home (purchased or built) that has never been lived in or sold as a residential property. It can be a house unit, duplex, townhouse, or a detached area on a relative’s land, like a tiny home. It can also be an off-the-plan purchase or a substantially renovated home
Residency RequirementSuccessful applicants must live in the home for at least 12 continuous months. Residency must commence within 12 months of settlementSuccessful applicants must live in the home for at least 6 continuous months. Residency must commence within 12 months of settlementSuccessful applicants must live in the home for at least 6 continuous months. Residency must commence within 12 months of settlement. You are allowed to rent out one or more rooms in the home during your minimum 6-month residency period, as long you still use the home as your primary residence. However, doing so may make you ineligible for transfer duty concessions
Other Benefits OfferedThe NSW state government also offers the First Home Buyers Assistance Scheme, which can be used alongside FHOG. This scheme provides full or partial exemption on transfer duty provided that the property amount is below $1 million. The same residency rules also applyThere are no longer open schemes that new homeowners can avail of alongside FHOG, but you can always monitor the Home Owner Assistance page on NT’s revenue website in case one pops up in the futureYou may be eligible for transfer duty concessions or exemptions (for special cases) for your first home or vacant land. Check the concessions page of QLD’s revenue website to learn more
Learn MoreNew South Wales Revenue Website (FHOG)Northern Territory FHOG PageQueensland FHOG Page
StateSouth AustraliaTasmaniaVictoriaWestern Australia
Grant Amount$15,000Up to $30,000 for transactions between 1 April 2021 and 30 June 2024$10,000$10,000
Property Price Cap$650,000 if the contract was signed on or after 15 June 2023None$750,000New homes south of the 26th parallel are capped at $750,000, while homes north of the 26th parallel are capped at $1,000,000
Eligible PropertiesNewly purchased, built, or substantially renovated homesEligible homes must be located in Tasmania, fixed to the land, and meet local planning standards. Homes must be newly bought or built and have never been occupied or sold as residential propertyEligible homes are newly purchased or built and have never been sold or occupied as a home previouslyFHOG is available for the purchase of a new home or a home that has undergone substantial renovations
Residency RequirementSuccessful recipients of the grant must continuously occupy the home for 6 months within 12 months of settlement or construction completionGrant recipients must live in the residence for 6 continuous months within 12 months of completion/settlementSuccessful applicants must live in the home for at least 12 continuous months. Residency must commence within 12 months of settlementSuccessful applicants must stay in the home as their permanent residence for 6 continuous months within 12 months from settlement or completion
Other Benefits OfferedYou may also be eligible for Stamp Duty Relief for First Home Buyers alongside the FHOG, although you will have to apply separately. If your new home is valued below $650,000 or if your vacant lot is below $400,000, you may get a stamp duty exemption. Meanwhile, you can get a stamp duty discount if your home is below $700,000 and your vacant lot is below $450,000You can qualify for a 50% discount on transfer duty if you’re a first-time homeowner of an established home. You are eligible if you purchase an established home worth $600,000 or less between 1 January 2022 and 30 June 2024The state of Victoria offers duty exemptions or concessions for first-time buyers. If you’re eligible for the FHOG, you are also eligible for these concessions. Eligible properties are either new or established with a dutiable value of up to $600,000If you are eligible for the FHOG, you may be eligible for the First Home Owner Rate (FHOR), which is a concessional rate of duty for the purchase or transfer of a home or vacant land
Learn MoreSouth Australia FHOG PageTasmania FHOG PageVictoria FHOG PageWestern Australia FHOG Page

How to Apply

New South Wales (NSW)

Applicants may apply directly to NSW’s FHOG Customer Portal or through NSW’s approved agents. Here are the documents required:

  • Category 1 Proof of Identity
    • Australian Birth Certificate (if citizen)
    • Foreign Passport and Residency Documents (if permanent resident)
    • New Zealand Passport (must be living in Australia)
  • Category 2 Proof of Identity
    • Identification with Photo and Signature (driver’s licence, passport, etc.)
  • Category 3 and 4 Proof of Community and Address
    • Utility Bills
    • Insurance
  • Property Documents
    • Contract of Sale (for purchased new homes)
    • Land Registry Services Title Search
    • Written Statement Confirming First Sale of the Home
    • List of Renovations (if applicable)
    • Copy of Comprehensive Home Building Contract (if applicable)
    • Inspection Reports (if applicable)

Northern Territory

You can submit your application directly to NT’s Territory Revenue Office, or you may submit it through a state-approved home loan provider. The application form can be found at the end of this guide. Here are the documents you will need:

  • Category 1 Proof of Identity
    • Australian Birth Certificate 
    • Foreign Passport and Citizenship/Permanent Residency Certificate (if permanent resident)
    • New Zealand Passport (must be living in Australia)
  • Category 2 Proof of Identity
    • Identification with Photo (driver’s licence, proof of age card, etc.)
    • Australian Passport 
  • Property Documents
    • Contract of Sale for Home
    • Contract to Build (if applicable)
    • Invoice or Receipts of Progress Payments (for those with contractors)
    • Invoice or Receipts of Building Cost (for owner-builders)
    • Occupancy Permit (if applicable)

Queensland

You can submit your application directly to Queensland’s Territory Revenue Office, or you may submit it through one of the state’s approved agents. You may download the application form from this page. Here are the documents you will need:

  • Category 1 Proof of Identity
    • Australian Birth Certificate 
    • Australian Passport 
    • Australian Citizenship Certificate
    • Current passport or ImmiCard and Visa (for permanent residents)
    • Titre de Voyage
  • Category 2 Proof of Identity
    • Identification with Photo (driver’s licence, firearm licence, proof of age card)
  • Category 3 Proof of Community
    • Medicare Card
    • Motor and Vehicle Registration
  • Category 4 Proof of Address
    • Utility Bills
  • Other Supporting Documents
    • Marital/Divorce/Change of Name Certificates (if applicable)
    • Declaration and Proof of Financial Help Received
  • Property Documents
    • Signed Contract of Sale (for new homes)
    • Signed Contract to Build (for building a new home)
    • Owner-builder Cost Summary Annexure
    • Independent Third-Party Appraisal of Home Value (for owner-builder)
    • Title Search or Registration Confirmation Statement
    • Final Inspection Certificate
    • Tax Invoice showing GST Component of Home Purchase Price (for substantially renovated homes)
    • Confirmation that the Home is New and Has Never Been Sold or Occupied

South Australia

You may lodge your application through your lender, which should be one of South Australia’s approved agents. If you are unable to apply through an approved agent, you may submit your application through the state revenue office. Here are some of the documents you may need:

  • Category 1 Proof of Identity
    • Australian Birth Certificate
    • Australian Passport
    • Citizenship Certificate or Australian Certificate of Registration by Descent
    • Foreign Passport and Permanent Residency Visa
    • New Zealand Passport (must be living in Australia)
  • Category 2 Proof of Identity
    • Australian Drivers Licence
  • Category 3 Proof of Community
    • Australian Medicare Card
  • Other Supporting Documents
    • Marriage Certificate/Divorce Certificate/Death Certificate of Spouse/Proof of Separation (if applicable)
  • Property Documents
    • Copy of Signed Contract for Sale (for new homes)
    • Copy of Signed Contract to Build (for building a new home)
    • Confirmation of Settlement
    • Statutory Declaration of Completion (owner-builders)
    • Copy of First Progress Payment Invoice (for new builds)
    • Proof of Lodgement or Registration with Lands Services SA
    • Written Confirmation that the home has not been previously sold or occupied
    • Certificate of Occupancy from Developer (off-the-plan homes)

Tasmania

You can apply through your lender, which should be one of Tasmania’s approved agents. You can also apply directly through the state’s online portal. Here are some of the documents you may need:

  • Category 1 Proof of Identity
    • Australian Passport OR Australian Birth Certificate
    • Citizenship Certificate
    • New Zealand Passport (must be living in Australia)
    • Foreign Passport and Permanent Residency Certificate/Visa
  • Category 2 Proof of Identity
    • Identification with Photo (driver’s licence, firearms licence, TAS photo identification card, etc.)
  • Category 3 Proof of Community
    • Motor Vehicle Registration
    • Medicare Card
  • Category 4 Proof of Address
    • Utility Bills
    • Insurance Policy
    • Other Supporting Documents
    • Evidence of Name Change (marriage certificate, certificate of name change, deed poll)
  • Property Documents
    • Contract for Sale 
    • Building Contract
    • Proof of Commencement of Construction
    • Land Title (for off-the-plan homes)
    • Certificate of Completion / Occupancy

Victoria

You can apply through one of the state’s approved agents, or you can lodge the application yourself through the online portal. Here are some of the documents needed:

  • Category 1 Proof of Identity
    • Australian Birth Certificate
    • Australian Passport
    • Australian Citizenship Certificate 
    • Foreign Passport and Permanent Residency Visa
    • New Zealand Passport and Movement Record (must be living in Australia)
  • Category 2 Proof of Identity
    • Australian Drivers Licence
    • Working with Children Check card
    • Firearms Licence
    • Proof of Age Card from Liquor Control Victoria
  • Category 3 Proof of Community
    • Australian Medicare Card
    • Motor Vehicle Registration Notice
    • Centrelink or Department of Veterans Affairs card
  • Other Supporting Evidence
    • Marriage Certificate/Divorce Certificate/Death Certificate of Deceased Spouse/Evidence of Separation
    • ADF-issued document proving permanent membership
    • Proof of enrolment on the Victorian Electoral Roll
  • Property Documents
    • Copy of Signed Contract of Sale
    • Copy of the Building Permit / Domestic Building Insurance Certificate
    • Certificate of Occupancy
    • Proof that the home has not been sold or occupied previously
    • Title Search
    • Signed Contract to Build (building new home w/ contractor or as owner-builder

Western Australia

Application for FHOG can be done through your lender, so ask your lender if they are an approved agent in WA. If you want to apply directly, you can use the FHOG Online Application Portal or download the form and submit it via web enquiry or by mail. Here are some of the documents you may need:

  • Category 1 Proof of Identity
    • Australian Birth Certificate
    • Australian Passport
    • Australian Citizenship Certificate 
    • Foreign Passport and Proof of Permanent Residency
    • New Zealand Passport and Movement Record (must be living in Australia)
  • Category 2 Proof of Identity
    • Australian Drivers Licence
    • Firearms Licence
    • Proof of Age Card with Photo
  • Category 3 Proof of Community
    • Australian Medicare Card
    • Motor Vehicle Registration
    • Centrelink or Department of Veterans Affairs card
  • Other Supporting Evidence
    • Marriage Certificate/Divorce Certificate/Death Certificate of Deceased Spouse/Evidence of Separation
  • Property Documents
    • Copy of Signed Contract of Sale
    • Title Search
    • Land Valuation
    • Proof that the home has not been sold or occupied previously
    • Copy of Signed Contract to Build
    • Construction Schedule
    • Proof of Construction Progress (invoices, receipts, etc.)
    • Notice of Completion (for owner-builders)

Australian Capital Territory (ACT)

FHOG in the Australian Capital Territory has been replaced by the Home Buyer Concession Scheme (HBCS). The HBCS focuses on stamp duty concessions based on income and dependents. For 2023-2024, the maximum concession amount the state provides is $34,505.

Are You a First-Time Homeowner?

If you’re in the process of buying or building your dream first home, you’re most likely facing some of the biggest expenses in your life. With programs like the FHOG, you can lighten the financial load so you can concentrate on the things that matter. While on the lookout for your first home, you can contact loan experts like Darkhorsefinancial.com.au to help you find the right lenders and loan terms. We can also help walk you through the process so you can secure your first home smoothly and with maximum savings. Contact us today.

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