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Renovating a home and HomeBuilder

You may be eligible for the HomeBuilder grant if you are:

  • renovating a home to live in
  • demolishing and building a home to live in.

The $25,000 grant is paid per home, and only once to an individual or couple. It is not available to investors who do not intend living in the home after the renovations and owner-builders.

  • You must meet the eligibility criteria.
  • Your contract is with a licensed builder, whose licence began before 4 June 2020.
  • The contract to renovate—or demolish and build—your home is signed between 4 June 2020 and 31 December 2020.
  • The contract is entered into at arm’s length or otherwise at a fair market price.
  • You are the owner of the property when you enter into the contract.
  • The value of property before renovation (house and land) is less than $1.5 million.
  • The contracted renovations cost between $150,000 and $750,000.
  • Building work under the contract must have commenced within 3 months of signing the contract. In limited circumstances, a 3-month extension may be granted.
  • You must not be performing any of the construction work yourself under the contract.
  • You must have been invoiced for and paid at least $150,000 in construction costs under your contract by 31 October 2022.

Substantial renovations

Renovations must substantially alter the existing dwelling, to make the property more livable and improve its accessibility or safety.

They do not need to involve removal or replacement of foundations, external walls, interior supporting walls, floors, roof or staircases.

A substantial renovation includes demolishing an existing home and building a new home on the land.

Examples of works that do not qualify include:

  • landscaping
  • standalone granny flats
  • swimming pools and tennis courts
  • structures that are not connected to the home (i.e. fences, outdoor spas and saunas, sheds or standalone garages).

Examples

In these examples, the individuals also need to meet the eligibility criteria and application deadlines.

Your obligations

You must move into your renovated home as your principal place of residence after the renovations have been completed, and live there continuously for 6 months.

You can rent out one or more rooms in the home during this 6-month period, as long as this arrangement doesn’t affect your use of the home. However, demolishing the existing home or renting out any rooms in the first year after you first move in may affect your eligibility for the first home concession or a first home vacant land concession.

Even though the residence requirements for this grant are similar to those for the home concessions, the grant and concessions are separate benefits—you need to meet the requirements in each case. For example, you can rent the home out before moving in and keep the grant, but you may lose the first home concession.

We may ask you to verify that you have met these requirements later, by providing us with documents that support the period of occupancy for all applicants.

When to apply

After you have signed your contract, there is a 2-step process to follow with strict timeframes.

Step 1:   Apply by 31 December 2020. Late applications are not accepted.

Step 2:   Provide all supporting evidence by 31 October 2022. Documents supplied after this date will not be accepted.

Supporting evidence

You will need to provide these documents when you apply:

  • A copy of the building contract dated between 4 June 2020 and 31 December 2020
  • A copy of your Australian Taxation Office notice of assessment for the year ended 30 June 2019 or 30 June 2020 with your tax file number concealed (For couples, both applicants must provide the notice for the same year.)
  • A copy of your Australian birth certificate, Australian passport or Australian citizenship certificate
  • A copy of photo ID such as an Australian driver licence, Australian proof of age card or Australian firearm licence (not needed if you have provided a copy of your Australian passport)
  • Certificates to confirm name change or marital status (e.g. marriage, divorce, death, separation)
  • Evidence of the value of your home before the renovations, such as a market appraisal or bank valuation. The evidence should be no later than 3 months before the contract was entered into.
  • A copy of a title search or the registration confirmation statement that shows you and your co-applicant (if applying as a couple) as registered owners on the title
  • Evidence of when construction commenced, including the first invoice issued for work carried out under the renovation contract and receipts to show that $150,000 has been paid to your builder
  • A statement confirming reasons for the delays if you were unable to start construction within 3 months.

Pre-approval

If you have entered into a contract and your bank or lender requires pre-approval for your HomeBuilder application:

  • make an application (as set out in step 1)
  • include the first 7 documents (if applicable) from the supporting evidence list
  • submit your application.

Allow 5 working days for a decision to be made. You will be notified via email of the next steps you need to take.

Remember, you will need to complete step 2 once your transaction is completed.

Apply

When the grant is paid

The grant is paid into your nominated bank account once construction has commenced and at least $150,000 of the contract price for renovations has been paid to the builder.

More information