The Australian Government is set to help more Australians onto the property ladder, with 50,000 places for the Home Guarantee Scheme available for the 2023/2024 financial year.

From 1 July the eligibility criteria was also relaxed.

Permanent residents, Australians that haven’t owned a home in more than 10 years, and all single legal guardians of one or more dependants – like aunts, uncles, or grandparents – can now make use of the scheme.

As can Aussies buying or building a home alongside friends, siblings, or family - beyond just the a defacto relationship or spouse.

The relaxed 'partner' criteria sees it fall in-line with state-run programs including the Victorian Homebuyer Fund and NSW Shared Equity Home Buyer Helper.

“The Government is moving to meet the times, because households have changed,” Federal Housing Minister Julie Collins said.

“I encourage Australians who may be finding the deposit hurdle difficult to overcome to look at support available under the Home Guarantee Scheme.”

The Home Guarantee Scheme essentially sees the government acting as guarantor for a buyer’s home loan. That means, eligible buyers can buy or build a home with as little as a 2-5% deposit and dodge paying Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI).

50,000 places available this fiscal year

Tens of thousands of homes could be bought under the scheme in the coming months, with 50,000 places available this fiscal year.

The new places will be spread across the scheme’s three guarantees:

  • 35,000 places with be made available for the First Home Guarantee

    The First Home Guarantee offers eligible first home buyers the option to purchase property with a 5% deposit.

It’s now available to permanent residents, those who haven’t owned property for at least a decade, and buyers making joint applications outside of married or de facto couples.

  • 10,000 places available for the Regional First Home Buyer Guarantee

    Under the Regional First Home Buyer Guarantee, eligible buyers snapping up their first home in regional Australia can enter the market with a 5% deposit.

All changes to the eligibility criteria for the First Home Guarantee also apply to the Regional First Home Buyer Guarantee.

In addition, some buyers can now be exempt from the requirement to live in or near the region they're buying in for 12 months prior. The change might affect people who have to relocate for their job.

  •  5,000 places are available for the Family Home Guarantee

    The Family Home Guarantee allows eligible single parents support to enter the property market with as little as a 2% deposit.

It was previously only available to single natural or adoptive parents. Now, eligible single legal guardians or at least one dependent child can apply.

The Home Guarantee Scheme is available to eligible buyers through 33 participating lenders.

The Westpac group was the most recent entrant on the program.

“These eligibility changes are sensible and inclusive,” Bendigo Bank chief customer officer Richard Fennell said.

“Home ownership may now become a reality, not just a dream, for newer Australians, different households, and those who have dropped off the property ladder." 

Great Southern Bank also backed the scheme.

"Opening the Scheme up to friends and other types of families, not just singles and couples, is a positive and clever step to enable home ownership," Chief Customer Officer Megan Keleher said.


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