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How to save more than 50K when buying your first home

Written by Ben Saravia,  
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Buying your first home is no doubt one of the biggest investments most people make in their lives. Ensuring that your finances are in order is one of the first and biggest challenges to overcome. It is therefore helpful to know that there may be some unique avenues of support available exclusively to first time home buyers. If that’s you, and you are reading this in 2020, read on.

First Home Buyers Grant 15K

The First Home Buyer Grant is one of the most widely known grants available to first home buyers.. Currently, The Queensland First Home Owners' Grant is worth $15,000 towards buying or building your new home. Of course there are some eligibility requirements, namely that the property has to be your first home, and will be your principal residence for at least six months following the purchase. The Queensland government has a long list of approved banks and lending institutions that can administer First Home Buyers Grants. Click here to view the list of approved agents.

Home Builder Grant 25K

If you build your own home, or buy a brand new home (or even substantially renovate an existing home) you could be eligible for a grant of $25,000. There are certain eligibility requirements, namely that your combined income ( for couples ) is less than 200,000 a year and that all applicants are Australian citizens. You will also need to be registered on the title and have it be your principal residence, meaning that you cannot use it towards an investment property. These are some considerations, and you will want to be 100% certain that you, your partner and potential new property are eligible, but it's definitely worthwhile!

See the Government website: for more details and some good examples of different cases that might apply to you.

First Home Buyer Transfer Duty Concession 15K+

The first home concession only applies to a home valued under $550,000 and can save you up to $15,925 that you would have otherwise paid on transfer duty. This is because first home buyers are given what is called a ‘concession rate’ on the first 500,000. In fact, according to their calculator, if your home is 500,000 or less you wouldn't even pay $1. Also, unlike the grants available, you do not have to be an Australian citizen or permanent resident to claim a concession, but you must meet the eligibility criteria.

 Check the Queensland Government website here to find out more.

Be informed

It is important to know what options are available to ensure that you get the maximum support and concessions available to you when buying your first place - as demonstrated, doing so could save you up to 50K off the total purchasing price! Add to these a little negotiating or a successful auction, and you could save yourself a tidy percentage off your eventual mortgage.

Where to now?

It can be daunting looking at grants, concessions and the financial aspect of buying a property. It really is essential that you seek independent legal, financial, taxation or other advice to check how the current support available relates to your unique circumstances. It's not just a disclaimer - the right advice at this time in your life could be a wise investment and pay off considerably.

Make sure you have a good team on your side. In many cases, your solicitor can help you with stamp duty considerations and your accountant can help you with other tax and legal considerations. Remember that the information on this website is for general information only. The above rates are valid at the time of publication and are valid for new contracts signed until the end of Dec 2020.

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