Buyers Advocates

A Buyers Agent Talks About Understanding the Australian First Home Buyer’s Grant


The Australian first home buyers grant, or the FHOG (first home owner’s grant) as it’s often referred to, is a form of financial aid that can be given to a new buyer to help with purchasing their first house whether they buy directly or go through auction using a buyers agent. It was originally introduced in July of 2000 and was intended to help to offset the GST (goods and services taxation) imposed whenever a new property is purchased or changes hands.


Each state within the country is responsible for defining the parameters of the grant and for those that meet all eligibility criteria, a one-off sum can be provided to go toward the cost of purchasing a property. In order to gauge eligibility, an applicant must first select their respective Australian state – and this should be the one that they reside in, or intend to move to.


The application process


During the application process, a candidate will have the option to submit the relevant information and data. The types of information required may vary from state to state, but in the majority of situations, it will relate to financial income, evidence pertaining to any property owned and other due diligence data that will be cross-referenced to ensure eligibility.


If an applicant is eligible, they will receive formal notification via post to confirm the success of their application. If they are not eligible the paperwork may be rejected – and depending on the reason for the rejection, an explanation may be provided. There are basic criteria that will need to be met however, and these introductory guidelines should be used as the framework for identifying whether or not an application is worth pursuing.


They include:

  • Information on whether a candidate owns any other property
  • Data relating to financial income and other tax information
  • Relationship details as married couples are only permitted to apply as a pair and not for two separate, individual grants
  • Proof of residency within Australia, or a valid visa that details long-term approval

There are other factors that will often be considered; including the age of the applicant/s, whether they have any children (either jointly or individually) and more in depth information to help with identification. In the majority of cases and when an applicant is eligible to apply, they may have little to no chance of being presented with a rejection – but to be safe, it can be worth hiring an agent to aid with the application process itself.


Certain states, such as Tasmania and Victoria, require background checks for any applicants that can go back for decades, while other regions are willing to accept less extensive checks. The only concerns relating to criminal backgrounds are those where an applicant may have been charged with fraud or financial offenses, but this is something that an agent should be able to help with when gauging eligibility.