To offset the impact of the introduction of the goods and services tax (GST), the Commonwealth has requested that the States and Territories assist first home buyers through the establishment of the First Home Owner Grant (FHOG).
- The broad principles of the grant are:
- Eligible applicants from 1 July 2000 are entitled to a one-off $7,000 payment.
- Eligible applicants must be natural persons, who are Australian citizens or permanent residents, who are buying or building their first home in Australia.
- To qualify for assistance, neither the applicant nor their spouse (or de facto) must have owned a home prior to 1 July 2000, either jointly, separately or with some other person.
- Neither the applicant nor their spouse (or de facto) must have owned and occupied a home after 1 July 2000.
- Neither the applicant nor their spouse (or de facto) must have claimed this grant previously.
- Entering into a binding contract or commencement of building, in the case of owner-builders, must have occurred on or after 1 July 2000.
- An eligible home will be located in Australia and will be a new or established house, home unit, flat or other type of self contained fixed dwelling that lawfully can be used as a place of residence.
- An eligible home must be occupied by the applicant(s) as their principal place of residence for a period of 6 months, within the first year from completion of construction or settlement of the home. This will be audited.
- Application for the grant must be made within 12 months of completion of construction or settlement of the home.
- Assistance will not be means tested.
- There is no tax payable on the grant.
- Joint applicants will be restricted to a single application for a single property and only one payment of $7,000 will be made.
- If the consideration of the home is less than $7,000 then the grant amount paid to the applicant will equal the consideration.
Each State and Territory Revenue Office is responsible for administering both the First Home Owner Grant and the Additional Grant in their respective jurisdictions.