The Federal Government today introduced legislation into the Commonwealth Parliament to establish the Help to Buy Program that will be administered and monitored by Housing Australia. The Program is not yet effective.
The Government announcement is available here.
The Home Guarantee Scheme (HGS)
The Home Guarantee Scheme (HGS) is an Australian Government initiative to support eligible home buyers to buy a home sooner. The Scheme is administered by the Housing Australia on behalf of the Australian Government.
The Scheme includes three types of Guarantees:
- First Home Guarantee (FHBG) – supporting eligible home buyers to buy a home sooner, with a deposit as little as 5%. For FY2023-24, 35,000 places are available.
- Regional First Home Buyer Guarantee (RFHBG) - supporting eligible regional home buyers to buy a home sooner, in a regional area, with a deposit as little as 5%. For FY2023-24, 10,000 places are available.
- Family Home Guarantee (FHG) – supporting eligible single parents and eligible single legal guardians of at least one dependent to buy a home sooner, with a deposit as little as 2%. For FY2023-24, 5,000 places are available.
The New Home Guarantee (NHG) is no longer available. A NHG place reserved on, or before 30 June 2022, will still be able to progress to settlement, subject to meeting eligibility criteria and NHG requirements and timelines.
How the HGS works
Housing Australia works with Participating Lenders to facilitate loans to eligible home buyers who meet income eligibility thresholds and other eligibility criteria and don’t have the 20% deposit typically required for a home loan.
Eligible home buyers can apply for a loan through a Participating Lender who has been authorised by Housing Australia to participate in the HGS.
Housing Australia provides a Guarantee to the Participating Lender of up to 15% of the value of a home loan under the First Home Guarantee or the Regional First Home Buyer Guarantee; and up to 18% under the Family Home Guarantee. This enables the home buyer to buy a home without paying Lenders Mortgage Insurance. The Guarantee is not a cash payment or a deposit for a home loan. Eligibility criteria apply.
Housing Australia has authorised a panel of 33 Participating Lenders to offer the HGS.
First Home Guarantee (FHBG)
Supporting eligible home buyers to buy a home sooner.
Regional First Home Buyer Guarantee (RFHBG)
Supporting eligible regional home buyers to buy a home sooner, in a regional area.
Family Home Guarantee (FHG)
Supporting eligible single parents or eligible single legal guardians of at least one dependent to buy a home sooner.
Guarantee Comparison Table
|First Home Guarantee (FHBG)||Regional First Home Buyer Guarantee (RFHBG)||Family Home Guarantee (FHG)|
|Places FY2023-24||35,000 places||10,000 places||5,000 places|
|Prior property ownership||First home buyers or previous homeowners who haven’t owned a property in Australia in the past 10 years (1)||Single parents or single legal guardians who do not currently own a property or do not intend to own a separate property when they settle on the home (2)|
(note: other eligibility criteria also apply)
Australian citizens or permanent residents (3)
The Department of Home Affairs classifies New Zealand Citizens as Permanent Residents for the purposes of citizenship applications only. This does not extend outside of this process. To verify your eligibility for the Home Guarantee Scheme, please perform a VEVO check with a participating lender.
|Individual and joint (4) applicants|
Individual and joint (4) applicants
Must have lived in the regional area (5) or adjacent regional area they are purchasing in for the preceding 12-month period to the date they execute the home loan agreement. Employees who have been required to relocate for work may be exempt from this requirement (6)
|Single parent or single legal guardian of at least one dependent (7)|
|Purchase location||All Australia||Regional areas only(5)||All Australia|
|Property price caps||Same for all Guarantees|
(1) Applicants can be either first home buyers or previous homeowners who haven’t owned a property in Australia in the ten years prior to the date they execute their home loan. Prior property ownership includes a freehold interest in real property in Australia (this includes owning land only), an interest in a lease of land in Australia with a term of 50 years or more, or a company title interest in land in Australia.
(2) At the time of the Home Loan Date the applicant does not currently hold, or at settlement of the property being purchased they do not intend to separately hold: a freehold interest in real property in Australia (this includes owning land only), an interest in a lease of land in Australia with a term of 50 years or more, or a company title interest in land in Australia.
(3) Permanent resident has the same meaning as in the Australian Citizenship Act 2007 (Cth).
(4) Joint applicants may include partners, friends, siblings, and other family members.
(5) A regional area is defined by the Australian Bureau of Statistics as an Australian Statistical Geography Standard 2016 Statistical Area Level 4 (ASGS SA4 2016). These areas are based on population density and labour markets and vary in size reflecting these criteria. The greater capital city areas of each state and the Northern Territory; and the entire Australian Capital Territory are excluded from the RFHBG.
(6) Applicants should check with their Participating Lender if this exemption applies.
(7) Includes single natural or adoptive parents or single legal guardians of at least one dependent.
Home buyers must meet certain eligibility criteria for the HGS, and these differ slightly for each of the Guarantees.
Access the Eligibility Tool – a short questionnaire to help home buyers determine which Guarantee/s they may be eligible for.
To view the eligibility criteria for each Guarantee, visit:
Contact a Participating Lender for more information, including the full list of eligibility criteria.
Property types and price caps
Under the HGS, home buyers can buy a residential property, including:
- an existing house, townhouse or apartment
- a house and land package
- land and a separate contract to build a home
- an off-the-plan apartment or townhouse.
Use the Property Price Cap Tool to look up the property price caps for each location.
Specific timeframes and criteria apply to different property types. The contract of sale and (if applicable) eligible building contract may need to be executed by specific dates.
Contact a Participating Lender for more information, including the full list of property criteria.
How to apply
HGS applications can only be made with a Participating Lender or their authorised representative (a mortgage broker). Housing Australia does not accept HGS applications or provide personal financial advice.
Home buyers (and those advising them) should consider consulting a Participating Lender and seeking independent financial and legal advice about whether a particular home loan or property, and the terms of the HGS suit personal circumstances and objectives.
Before entering into a home loan agreement, home buyers should consider talking with their lender (or broker) about the potential implications of changing interest rates or house prices on individual circumstances.
Housing Australia has authorised a panel of 33 Participating Lenders to offer the HGS to home buyers.
Tools to help home buyers apply
The Eligibility Tool is a short questionnaire to help home buyers determine which Guarantee/s they may be eligible for.
Use the property price cap tool
The postcode search tool helps home buyers determine the property price caps for the suburb they are buying in.
Tools and resources
Home buyers can access a range of online tools and documents in Tools and Resources.
Need some help?
Questions or queries
Frequently Asked Questions
Search the Frequently Asked Questions for general information about the Home Guarantee Scheme.