The FHOG, what is it?
The Queensland First Home Owners’ Grant is a state government initiative to help first home owners to get their new first home sooner.
How much is the grant?
At the current time (Oct 2019) the FHOG is $15,000 for contracts dated from the 1st of July 2018.
What are the eligibility criteria?
- You must be at least 18 years of age.
- You must be an Australian citizen or permanent resident (or applying for the grant with someone who is).
- You or your spouse must not have previously owned property in Australia that you have lived in. You may have owned an investment property providing you didn’t live in it.
- You must be buying or building a brand-new home. For example, a house, unit, duplex, townhouse or granny flat built on a relative’s land.
- The grant may also be claimed when purchasing an established property that has been substantially renovated before you buy it. Now a substantial renovation is when all, or most, of the structural or non-structural components of a building are removed or replaced, so a new kitchen and a coat of paint isn’t going to be enough to qualify an established home for the grant.
- The value of the home you are purchasing or building including the land must be less than $750,000.
- You must move into the new home as your principal place of residence within 1 year of the completed transaction and live there continuously for 6 months.
- Once you have lived in the property for 6 months then you are free to rent it out.
- Lastly, all applicants must be individuals (i.e. not a company or a person acting as trustee).
Can I use the FHOG as a deposit?
Yes, you can. Generally, the FHOG won’t be enough to cover your total deposit but it is a really good start. The funds for the FHOG are advanced at settlement. It becomes somewhat more complicated if building house as the FHOG isn’t usually released till the first draw down (slab invoice) and builders generally want a 5% deposit to commence. Assuming your adding some of your own funds as a deposit then the that can be used to cover the builders 5% commencement deposit.
How do I apply?
When you apply for the Queensland First Home Owners Grant, you must lodge the completed application and all supporting documents within 12 months of completion of the eligible transaction.
As mentioned, you’ll need to provide supporting documentation with your application form. The documentation will vary depending on whether you are buying off the plan, building a new home or are building as an owner builder.
Certainly, proof of identity and a signed & dated contract are required across all scenarios.
As you can see there is a lot to consider when applying for the grant, so it certainly helps to have someone like your mortgage broker assisting you with the process.
When it comes to completing the application it’s about 15 pages long but once again your broker will be happy to assist you with it.
The eligibility test.
Download the application form