First Home Guarantee Guide

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Are you a first-time buyer and want to break into the real estate market? The Première Habitation Guarantee could help you make your real estate dreams come true.

Existing under the Australian Government’s Home Guarantee Scheme, the First Home Guarantee is designed to help eligible first-time home buyers enter the property market.

Here you can find more information about the First Home Guarantee, including house price caps and requirements for first-time home buyers to participate in the program.

What is the First Home Guarantee?

The First Home Guarantee (FHBG) is an Australian government incentive for first-time home buyers who want to buy their first home. The program offers first-time home buyers the opportunity to purchase a home with as low as 5% down payment, without having to pay Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI). This means you can borrow up to 95% of the property’s value, with the federal government offering the lender a guarantee of up to 15% of the property’s value.

The FHBG coexists with the Garantie Habitation Régionale and the Garantie Habitation Familiale.

The FHBG is administered by the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation (NHFIC) on behalf of the Australian Government, providing 35,000 places to Australians across the country each financial year until June 30, 2025.

See more : Guide to the Regional Home Ownership Guarantee

Properties eligible for the Première Habitation Guarantee

Under the FHBG, a property must be considered a residential property to be considered eligible. Residential properties eligible for the program include:

  • An existing house, townhouse or apartment.
  • A house and land unit.
  • Land and a separate contract to build a house.
  • An off-plan apartment or townhouse.

Price cap for the First Home Guarantee

For first-time home buyers who want to take advantage of the program, there are specific price caps for the property you can buy. Ultimately, the cap depends on the state or territory you live in and the area within each. The table below shows how much you can spend on a first home to qualify to receive the FHBG.

To find the house price ceiling for a particular suburb or location you are looking to live in, you can take advantage of the NHFIC Suburban Postcode Finder.

New South Wales – capital and regional center

New South Wales – other

Victoria – capital and regional center

Victoria – other

Queensland – capital and regional center

Queensland – other

Western Australia – capital

Western Australia – other

South Australia – capital

South Australia – other

Tasmania – capital

Tasmania – other

Australian Capital Territory

North territory

Territory of Jervis Bay and Norfolk Island

Christmas Island and Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Eligibility for the First Home Guarantee

To benefit from the federal government program, applicants must meet the following conditions:

  • All applicants must be first-time home buyers and must not have owned or had an interest in residential property – either as an investment or owner occupied.
  • Individual applicants must have earned less than $125,000 or $200,000 for couples in the last financial year – as evidenced by your ATO assessment notice.
  • Couples must be married or in a common-law relationship. Other people buying together, including friends, siblings or a parent/child are not eligible.
  • All applicants must be at least 18 years of age and have a valid Medicare card (or Defense ID card).
  • All applicants must be Australian citizens with a valid Australian passport or proof of Australian citizenship. Permanent residents are not eligible.
  • Applicants must have a down payment of between 5% and 20% of the property value.
  • Your purchased property must be an acceptable property type and within the property price threshold for the suburb and postcode.

To be eligible for the FHBG, the sales contract and (if applicable) the eligible construction contract may have specific dates on which they can be signed by the purchaser. There are no exceptions to these mandatory dates.

Before enrolling in the program, first-time home buyers should discuss their personal financial situation with a participating lender.

Participating lenders

  • Commonwealth Bank
  • NAB
  • Australian Military Bank
  • Australian Mutual Bank
  • australian bank
  • Bank Australia
  • Bank first
  • Heritage Island Bank
  • bank of us
  • bcu
  • Bendigo Bank
  • Beyond Bank Australia
  • border bank
  • Community first
  • Credit Union SA
  • Defense Bank
  • Mutual Bank of Firefighters
  • G&C Mutual Bank
  • Gateway bank
  • Great South Bank
  • Health Professionals Bank
  • Indigenous business Australia
  • Illawarra Credit Union
  • IMB Bank
  • Mortgage
  • MyState Bank
  • Newcastle Permanent Building Society
  • P&N Bank
  • people’s choice
  • Police bank
  • QBANK
  • National Bank of Queensland
  • Regional Bank of Australia
  • Teachers’ Mutual Bank
  • The Mutual Bank
  • UniBank
  • Unit Bank Limited
  • WOW

Advantages and disadvantages of the Première Habitation Guarantee

Advantages

LMI savings

To avoid paying Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI), you usually need to have a 20% deposit. If your deposit is lower, then LMI applies.

For example, on a $700,000 property with a 5% down payment, the insurance that acts as a layer of protection for the lender could cost you up to $28,000.

A key benefit of FHBG is that you avoid paying LMI. This is thanks to the intervention of the federal government which offers a guarantee of up to 15% of the purchase price.

Buy earlier

For first-time home buyers today, saving for a 20% down payment can take over a decade. Entering the real estate market with just a 5% down payment can also mean you can buy a property sooner.

The inconvenients

Higher interest charges

A 5% deposit means you’ll need to borrow more to meet your early real estate goals, which means your total interest bill could end up costing you more over the life of the loan.

The price of real estate is falling

If real estate prices fall, you could find yourself in a situation where you owe more than you own. It becomes a problem if you have to sell. If you are able to hold on to your property, for the long term, you should be able to ride out the waves of uncertainty that come with the real estate market.


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Image by Rodnae Productions via Unsplash

The whole market has not been taken into account in the selection of the above products. Instead, a reduced portion of the market was considered. Products from some vendors may not be available in all states. To be considered, the product and price must be clearly published on the product supplier’s website. Savings.com.au, yourmortgage.com.au, yourinvestmentpropertymag.com.au and Performance Drive are part of the Savings Media group. In the interest of full disclosure, Savings Media Group is associated with Firstmac Group. To learn how Savings Media Group handles potential conflicts of interest, as well as how we are paid, please visit the website links at the bottom of this page.

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