What's in the budget for would-be homebuyers? A big fat lot of 'not much' - at least nothing extraneous to policies already announced.

Help to Buy Scheme gets more funding

The financial year 2024-25 is where the rubber hits the road for the Help to Buy Scheme, with an extra $5.5 billion committed for that period.

Under the scheme, the government will provide an equity contribution of up to 40% of the purchase price for new homes and 30% of the price of existing homes.

To be eligible for the scheme, a buyer must earn, and continue earning, below set thresholds.

Those thresholds are currently $90,000 for singles and $120,000 for couples, and are expected to rise in line with wages more broadly.

Housing Australia Future Fund (HAFF)

The first $500 million of the $10 billion HAFF will be disbursed in 2024-25.

As has been announced, the government is aiming to build 1.2 million homes over the next five years, which equates to 240,000 a year or 20,000 a month.

In recent months dwelling approvals, commencements and completions have fallen to multi-decade lows.

Industry groups such as the Housing Industry Association, which appeared on the Savings Tip Jar podcast, says the government risks missing its target if more is not done.

Housing Australia gets a boost

Housing Australia - formerly the catchily-named National Housing & Finance Investment Corporation (NHFIC) - will get a funding boost in its liability cap by $2.5 billion to $10 billion.

These changes will enable Housing Australia to provide more low-cost finance to community housing providers.

Goodbye Home Guarantee?

Housing Australia also underwrites programs such as the Home Guarantee Scheme, which allows home buyers to enter the market with as little as a 2% deposit.

The scheme encompasses the First Home Guarantee, the Regional First Home Guarantee, and the Family Home Guarantee.

However there was no explicit mention of any tweaks to the deliveries of these programs and no extra funding committed.

It's estimated one in three first home buyers entering the market in 2022-2023 were supported by this scheme.

The First Home Guarantee component of the scheme was heavily subscribed by teachers (32% of recipients), nurses (24%) and social workers (19%).

Extra spending on social housing, efforts to reduce rental pressures

Finally, the government has committed $6.2 billion of this budget to building more social housing, including an extra $1 billion directed to the states and territories.

That extra $1 billion is primarily meant to fund the connecting of services, such as water, sewage, power, and roads, to social housing.

Funding will also be directed towards building more student accommodation, with the government to work with universities to right-size the plans.

The government will also set limits for how many international students can be enrolled by each university based on factors including how much student accommodation they can provide.

Foreign investors will also face lower fees when buying established properties, provided they do so through 'build to rent' initiatives.

Speaking of build-to-rent, the build-to-rent incentives include halving the managed investment trust withholding tax rate from 30% to 15%, and increasing the capital works tax deduction (depreciation) rate from 2.5 to 4% per year for newly constructed build-to-rent properties.

The government appears to have heeded calls from the Property Council of Australia, which suggested this could unlock 150,000 apartments over the next decade.

The government is also expected to introduce federal minimum rental standards market-wide.

This will see a more unified approach in what constitutes reasonable grounds for eviction, and will also seek to limit rent increases to once per year.

So far detail on delivery of these items is light - expect more information in the coming days and weeks.

How does this compare to last year's Budget? Check out our coverage of the 2023 Federal Budget for homebuyers.


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Update resultsUpdate
LenderHome LoanInterest Rate Comparison Rate* Monthly Repayment Repayment type Rate Type Offset Redraw Ongoing Fees Upfront Fees LVR Lump Sum Repayment Additional Repayments Split Loan Option TagsFeaturesLinkCompare
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Base criteria of: a $400,000 loan amount, variable, fixed, principal and interest (P&I) home loans with an LVR (loan-to-value) ratio of at least 80%. However, the ‘Compare Home Loans’ table allows for calculations to be made on variables as selected and input by the user. Some products will be marked as promoted, featured or sponsored and may appear prominently in the tables regardless of their attributes. All products will list the LVR with the product and rate which are clearly published on the product provider’s website. Monthly repayments, once the base criteria are altered by the user, will be based on the selected products’ advertised rates and determined by the loan amount, repayment type, loan term and LVR as input by the user/you. *The Comparison rate is based on a $150,000 loan over 25 years. Warning: this comparison rate is true only for this example and may not include all fees and charges. Different terms, fees or other loan amounts might result in a different comparison rate. Rates correct as of . View disclaimer.

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