The First Home Owner Remission Scheme is an initiative from the Brisbane City Council to provide first home buyers with a discount on their Council rates in their first year of home ownership . This scheme provides a one-year 50 per cent rates discount for first home owners up to a value of $1000 within the Brisbane City Council municipality.

This concession is available to first home owners across the Brisbane City Council’s 190 mainland suburbs, additional islands and localities in Moreton Bay.

Eligibility Criteria: The First Home Owner Remission Scheme

To be eligible for the First Home Owners Remission scheme:

  • an application must be made by all property owners.
  • all applicants must be at least 18 years of age.
  • at least one applicant must be an Australian citizen or permanent resident

All applicants must be eligible first home owners, meaning all applicants:

  1. do not currently own a home in Australia; and
  2. have not previously owned a home in Australia, and
  3. are purchasing their first home and occupy the home as the principal place of residence of all applicants for a continuous period of at least 6 months within the first 12 months following the title transfer date; or
  4. applicants who purchase their first block of land within the Brisbane City Council area and within one year build and occupy a home on the land as their principal place of residence for a continuous period of at least 6 months.

All applicants must be buying or building a new or established home in the Brisbane local government area.

The value of the home, including the land, must be less than $750,000.

The online application form for the First Home Owner Remission Scheme is available here online application form

There is another  Brisbane City Council concession that First Home Buyers are entitled to. Normally the Brisbane City Council charges a  “Rate Account and Services Establishment Fee” of $195.20 to establish a new rate account when a property transfers ownership.
But did you know that as a first home buyer you can apply for an exemption from this fee and save yourself $195.20?

Eligibility Criteria:

You can apply for exemption from the Rate Account and Services Establishment Fee when:

  • you buy your first home and live in it
  • you buy your first block of land and build and occupy a home on the land for at least six months within 12 months of the title transfer date
  • you change your name because you marry
  • you transfer to or include a spouse/de facto/partner on the title as a result of an amalgamation or separation of assets on the principal place of residence (applies to first home buyers only)
  • the property goes to surviving joint tenant/s on the death of other joint tenant/s
  • there is a transfer of ownership where no money is exchanged
  • there is a transfer as a result of a gift or through natural love and affection
  • there is a transfer by consent/direction of a Court
  • it is pursuant to a will intestacy – this occurs when ownership transfer was not made clear in a deceased owner’s will
  • there is a transfer from a long-term lease to occupancy of a unit for the life of the person (freehold interest) – applies to residents of retirement villages registered with the Department of Justice and Attorney-General.

To complete the online application form visit this link, online application form.

I realise these concessions are small when compared with the massive financial commitment required in purchasing your first home. Still, that first year of home ownership is a big adjustment financially and you have to take advantage of every benefit available to you.

Potentially you could save nearly $1200 which could go towards furniture, or your garden, or any of the dozens of things you need as a new home owner.