Media Release by The Hon Tanya Pibersek MP

$21,000 boost for first home owners

Joint Media Release with:

  • The Hon Kevin Rudd, Prime Minister
  • The Hon Wayne Swan MP, Treasurer

The Rudd Government today announced a First Home Owners Boost to ensure first home buyers will be eligible for grants of up to $21,000.

The First Home Owners Boost is a decisive Rudd Government initiative to stimulate housing activity and give first home buyers a better chance in the housing market.

Under the First Home Owners Boost:

  • First home buyers who purchase established homes will have their grant doubled from $7,000 to $14,000; and
  • First home buyers who purchase a newly constructed home will receive an extra $14,000 to take their grant to $21,000.

More than 150,000 first home buyers are estimated to benefit from the scheme.

The Rudd Government’s First Home Owners Boost is part of the Rudd Government’s $10.4 billion Economic Security Strategy to strengthen the Australian economy during the global financial crisis.

First home buyers will be eligible for the First Home Owners Boost from today (14 October, 2008).

All contracts entered into by 30 June, 2009 will be eligible for this new additional assistance.

The Rudd Government will invest almost $1.5 billion in the housing market through this initiative.

All newly-constructed homes will have to at least meet their relevant State and Territory energy efficiency and sustainability standards.

This initiative will help strengthen the Australian economy during global financial crisis and help protect Australians during the difficult global economic times that lie ahead.

The Rudd Government understands that the economy faces the twin challenges of a subdued housing market and housing affordability levels at record lows.

That is why the Government is committed to action on both fronts.

This measure builds on the Government’s $2.2 billion worth of housing initiatives in the 2008-09 Budget, including:

  • A National Rental Affordability Scheme to build 50,000 new affordable rental properties;
  • A Housing Affordability Fund to reduce the cost of bringing new homes to market; and
  • First Home Saver Accounts to encourage young people to save for a new home.

The First Home Owners Boost responds to the housing affordability challenge and will help strengthen residential investment activity in Australia.