HomeBuilder extension gives applicants extra 12 months to build

Two construction workers building a home.

The federal government announced an extension to the construction commencement requirement for the HomeBuilder program on Saturday, giving existing applicants a total of 18 months to begin work on their homes.

The extension will apply to all applicants who signed contracts during the HomeBuilder eligibility period between 4 June 2020 and 31 March 2021.

While the deadline for applications has passed, those who have already lodged an application will now have until 30 April 2023 to submit all the necessary documentation to their State or Territory Revenue Office.

Introduced in June 2020 to prevent activity in the residential construction sector from drying up, the HomeBuilder scheme has so far attracted more than 121,000 applicants.

“The swift introduction of HomeBuilder gave Australians the confidence to build or rebuild a home during a period of great uncertainty,” said Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Housing, Michael Sukkar.

It’s also been a key ingredient in Australia’s property boom, with a 27 per cent increase in detached dwelling commencements over the December quarter, as per the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

The initial program required successful applicants to begin construction within six months of the contract date. The additional 12 months will provide a buffer in the event of delays, such as COVID-19 related supply constraints or disruptions due to natural disaster.

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said the extension will “ensure that existing applicants facing difficulties in starting construction on their new builds and renovations are not denied a HomeBuilder grant due to circumstances outside their control.”

In its current form, the HomeBuilder scheme offers $15,000 grants to eligible Australians when purchasing new builds valued at under $950,000 in New South Wales, $850,000 in Victoria, and $750,000 in all other States

The grant is also available to subsidise renovations of between $150,000 and $750,000 on existing homes, so long as the value of the property including land does not exceed $1.5 million.

For more information on property and lending trends, head over to our home loan statistics page. And if you’re in the market for a home loan, visit our home loan comparison page, or browse the selection below.

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* WARNING: This comparison rate applies only to the example or examples given. Different amounts and terms will result in different comparison rates. Costs such as redraw fees or early repayment fees, and cost savings such as fee waivers, are not included in the comparison rate but may influence the cost of the loan. The comparison rate displayed is for a secured loan with monthly principal and interest repayments for $150,000 over 25 years.

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