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Support for first home buyers

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Further detail about the Federal Government’s plan to help first home buyers through its loan deposit scheme is a welcome step in helping more Australians into property ownership and improving confidence in the housing sector.

`“Prospective first home buyers now have all of the information they will need to understand their eligibility for the scheme which will be available for 10,000 loans in its first year,” said Ken Morrison, Chief Executive of the Property Council.

“It’s pleasing to see the Government moving ahead on the delivery of this initiative which is due to come into effect from 1 January 2020.

“The scheme is targeted to helping first home buyers bridge the deposit gap which continues to be a significant hurdle to home ownership, even with the recent softening in house prices.

“While there is some more detail to be determined before eligible borrowers can actually apply, the information now available should help them to start making plans.

“The Government seems to be getting the balance right between helping genuine first home buyers while also recognising the variations in markets around the country, and between metropolitan and regional areas through the setting of price caps for eligible property purchases,” Mr Morrison said.

The Property Council will review the draft NIFIC investment mandate that provides the basis for the scheme. Given the added complexity for those eligible first home buyers who choose to purchase off-the-plan apartments or house-and-land packages, it will be important the mandate gets these elements right.

“The scheme comes at a time of declining construction levels for new housing which has an impact on jobs, housing affordability and supply.

“Getting these settings right, including keeping the focus on new housing construction, will be vital in ensuring the scheme is a winner for first home buyers and the housing sector more generally,” Mr Morrison said.

Source: Property Council of Australia

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