Australian government unveils 'Help to Buy' legislation, a game changer for aspiring homeowners
Peak industry bodies praise the Government for the latest measure. Image: Canva.
  • Help to Buy to make homeownership more accessible for 40,000 households.
  • Homebuyers will receive equity contribution of up to 40% for new homes.
  • Scheme will provide long-term relief with lower ongoing repayments.

The Federal Government has announced the ‘Help to Buy’ legislation this week, a game-changing set of reforms making homeownership more accessible for thousands of Australians.

Making homeownership possible once again

The legislation will see the Government make homeownership possible for 40,000 Australian households. With rental vacancies at historic lows and rents persistently breaking new highs, the news will be a turning point for Australians who have been denied homeownership’s security and stability.

Here, the Government will provide eligible homebuyers an equity contribution of up to 40% for new homes and 30% for established homes.

Homebuyers must pay a minimum 2% deposit to participate in the scheme. Under the scheme, participants will experience lower ongoing repayments, giving them long-term relief.

Additionally, states must pass their own legislation for Help to Buy to operate within a jurisdiction. As all states have agreed at the National Cabinet to pass the legislation, the scheme will go online next year.

“Right across the country Help to Buy will be life-changing, bringing home ownership back into reach for thousands of Australians, particularly renters,” said Minister for Housing, Julie Collins.

“It won’t just be a leg up into home ownership with savings from a smaller deposit – it will provide long-term relief to Australians who are part of the Scheme.”

Julie Collins, Minister for Housing

Help to Buy will join several other government initiatives to address the housing crisis, including the Housing Australia Future Fund and the Social Housing Accelerator, illustrating the Federal Government’s commitment to tackling the problem from all angles.

UDIA applauds new measures

Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) national president Col Dutton commended the Albanese government’s scheme, calling the support “life-changing” and placing homeownership within reach of Australians who previously would never own a home.

Particularly, UDIA praised the Government for balancing supply-boosting initiatives with homeownership measures to prevent upward pressure on prices. Nevertheless, they noted there was much work still to be done.

“Federal, state and territory plans for accelerating planning approvals will also need to be fast-tracked across the whole housing continuum along with the release of more development-ready land to keep housing supply and affordability manageable,” Dutton said.

HIA responds positively

The Housing Industry Association (HIA) also had a warm reception for Help to Buy.

“HIA welcomes the introduction of the Help to Buy legislation to support more young Australians access to housing and address the declining rates of home ownership in Australia,” said HIA Managing Director, Jocelyn Martin.

“The Help to Buy Scheme is an important initiative of the Federal Government to enable 40,000 eligible home buyers to obtain and secure a deposit for a new home faster,” she said.

“While the opportunity to own a home can be challenging, and the type of homes many families aspire to are changing shape, previous research conducted by HIA shows an overwhelming majority of Australians agree that homeownership matters.”

“These and other forms of housing incentive programs are critical to boost housing supply and home ownership rates to support first home buyers raising the deposit more quickly and easily.”

Jocelyn Martin, HIA Managing Director

“We know from previous schemes, such as the first Home Buyer Grant, that grants such as Help to Buy, are effective to getting people into their own home, and new housing supply is stimulated by these schemes.

“HIA has been a strong supporter of assistance for first home buyers, to help get Australians into their first home and achieve their home ownership aspirations.”

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