New South Wales conveyancers need to be aware of the current changes in place as of 1 July 2023, to the First Home Buyers schemes.
The newly expanded First Home Buyers Assistance Scheme (FHBAS) including increased requirements and additional exemptions are now active of July 1.
For contracts that exchange on or after 1 July 2023, eligible first home buyers will receive an exemption from transfer duty for purchases of new and existing homes up to $800,000 and a concessional rate of duty for homes less than $1,000,000.
The residence requirement for the First Home Buyers Assistance Scheme will increase to 12 months for contracts that exchange on or after 1 July 2023.
The First Home Buyer Choice (FHBC) scheme is now closed and is no longer available for any transactions entered into on or after 1 July 2023. Additionally, retrospective refund applications can no longer be submitted.
Those eligible for the FHBC who entered into transactions on or before 30 June 2023 will have until settlement to opt into the scheme.
As of July 1, residence requirements also changed for both the First Home Buyers Assistance Scheme, First Home Owner (New Home) Grant, deferral of transfer duty payment for off the plan transactions, and exemptions for tenants of the Department of Housing and Aboriginal Housing Office.
For conveyancers with purchasers applying for any of the above schemes, grants or exemptions on or after 1 July 2023, must move into their homes within 12 months of settlement.
An important note for conveyancers to educate clients is the purchaser must live in the property for a continuous 12-month period to satisfy the residence requirement.
All updated forms can be found at the First Home Buyers Legislation Amendment Act 2023 information page.