SA first home buyers entitled to pay just 2pc deposit on new builds through HomeStart

SA first home buyers entitled to pay just 2pc deposit on new builds through HomeStart

A groundbreaking ceremony at the new community Oaklands Green, where Rivergum Homes - a HomeStart partner - is building the first 28 homes.

First home buyers in South Australia purchasing new builds or vacant land for construction will be able to put down a deposit of just 2 per cent as part of the state government-backed HomeStart scheme.

This would equate to an upfront saving of approximately $93,420 compared to a 20 per cent deposit when taking out a loan for a property worth $519,000 - the median price for new builds under HomeStart in 2022-23.

However, the median house price in metropolitan Adelaide was $740,000 at the end of last year.

SA Treasurer Stephen Mullighan announced today that the new loan is only available for new builds in metropolitan and selected regional areas.

Eligible applicants must also purchase a house and land package with one of HomeStart’s 11 selected builder partners: Hickinbotham, Statesman Homes, SA Housing Centre, Metricon, Fairmont Homes, Sterling Homes, Metro Homes SA, Simonds, Rivergum Homes, Weeks Building Group, or HPG Homes.

HomeStart loans will only be available to first home buyers who are Australian citizens or permanent residents, and who will live in the property concerned as their primary residence.

For contracts worth up to $650,000, a first home buyer may be eligible for a $15,000 First Home Owners Grant (FHOG) and an abolition of stamp duty, and will not need to make any loan repayments for nine months or until the home is built - whichever comes first.

Unlike many commercial lenders, HomeStart does not require lenders mortgage insurance if buyers don’t have a 20 per cent deposit which can cost in excess of $10,000.

Last year’s state budget featured a $474.7 million housing package to support the delivery of 3,600 new homes over five years and reduce the cost of housing for around another 14,000 new homes.

"We are doing everything possible to help South Australians achieve the dream of home ownership," Mullighan says.

"Saving a deposit can take years, and make it seem impossible to get a foot in the door. This new 2 per cent minimum deposit home loan through HomeStart is another way we are helping first home buyers, saving them thousands in upfront costs while also increasing much needed supply."

HomeStart CEO Andrew Mills says reducing the deposit requirement will open the market to many first homebuyers who previously felt home ownership wasn’t possible for them.

"It will also provide a boost to the building industry and support ongoing employment in the sector," Mills says.

"Home ownership is transformative, providing safety and security for families while contributing to the social and economic success of our state," adds Hickinbotham Group managing director Michael Hickinbotham, whose company is one of the beneficiary partners of the initiative.

"It is pleasing to see meaningful action by the State Government to make home ownership more accessible. This increased support will help more South Australians into home ownership, sooner," Hickinbotham says.

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