HomeBuilder Grants for Major Renovations – Updated

HomeBuilder Grants

On 4 June 2020, the Federal Government announced HomeBuilder, a stimulus package for the building industry that has immediate benefits for homeowners planning major renovations to their homes.

On 29 November 2020, the Federal Government updated the program: the grant was extended until 31 March 2021, and there were other major changes that are outlined below:

Original Eligibility Criteria

The original scheme required the following:

  • Couples applying for the grant must earn less than $200,000 per year to be eligible;
  • Individuals must earn less than $125,000 per year;
  • Renovations must cost more than $150,000 but under $750,000;
  • The grant will only be available on properties valued at less than $1.5 million prior to the renovation work;
  • The scheme won’t apply to investment properties;
  • The grant won’t be given to owners who renovate their home without employing builders;
  • Renovations can’t include structures separate to the main home like swimming pools, tennis courts and sheds;
  • You must enter into a building contract between 4 June 2020 and 31 December 2020;
  • All eligible builders must be licensed or registered before the Government’s announcement.

29 November 2020 Update

On 29 November the following major changes were announced by the Federal Government:

    • A $15,000 grant for building contracts (new builds and substantial renovations) signed between 1 January 2021 and 31 March 2021, inclusive.
    • An extended deadline for all applications to be submitted, including those applying for the $25,000 grant and the new $15,000 grant.
    • Applications can now be submitted up until 14 April 2021 (inclusive). This will apply to all eligible contracts signed on or after 4 June 2020.
    • An extension to the construction commencement timeframe from three months to six months for all HomeBuilder applicants. This will apply to all eligible contracts signed on or after 1 January 2021, but will also be backdated and apply to all contracts entered into on or after 4 June 2020.
    • An increase to the property price cap for new build contracts in New South Wales and Victoria to $950,000 and $850,000, respectively, where the contract is signed between 1 January 2021 and 31 March 2021, inclusive.
    • The existing new build property price cap of $750,000 will continue to apply in all other States and Territories.
    • A change in licensing requirements and registration for builders and developers, as below:
      • Where an eligible contract is signed on or after the 29 November 2020, the builder or developer must have a valid licence or registration before 29 November 2020.
      • Where an eligible contract is signed before 29 November 2020, the builder or developer must have a valid licence or registration before 4 June 2020.

Other than the above, the existing program criteria applies. The other existing eligibility criteria remains in place.

Also not that the $25,000 grant will still be made available for eligible contracts signed on or before 31 December 2020.

Full details of the changes announced on 29 November can be found here on the Treasury’s HomeBuilder webpage.

The Need to Add Space

Typically, families look to build home additions and extensions because they love their neighbourhood and don’t want to move, but their current home doesn’t have the space they need, usually because the family is growing in one way or another.

Whether it’s the arrival of a new baby, teenagers needing their privacy, or because the family has decided to cohabit with an elderly parent, this grant will help solve a range of issues that prompt a family to redevelop their home.

Homeowners also understand the ‘dead money’ of moving – major costs like stamp duty – versus the investment of building which increases the value of their home by adding extra bedrooms, bathrooms and living spaces.

COVID-19 and the Family Home

For many families, the recent lockdown has also exposed some of the limitations of their current home configuration when kids have been trying to study at the same time as adults are working from home.

Home renovations are a great opportunity to create home offices and bedrooms of a size that allow children the space to study in privacy away from kitchen tables and open areas that have proven distracting.

Advantages of ‘Concept-to-Completion’

Concept-to-completion means the constructor you employ designs, manages the development approvals, and builds your home improvements.

Having a builder who does all three services, Addbuild being an example, means they can anticipate potential issues and also have the experience to design renovations that are less likely to get stuck in council.

Given the duration of the HomeBuilder scheme – currently only 6 months – this should be a major factor when selecting a builder.

Faster Approvals: Complying Developments

Addbuild also has its ‘Classic Design‘ series, a set of standardised plans designed to take advantage of the NSW ‘Complying Development‘ option – if your home and land meets certain criteria you can obtain approval within a few weeks of submission, and Addbuild can potentially start building your new home within just a month or so of your decision to add space with us.

Still family run, Addbuild celebrates 40 years in business in 2020, and with over 1,500 projects built, we are Sydney’s leading home additions and extensions builder.

If you are interested in using HomeBuilder to make major renovations to your home and haven’t yet settled on a builder, please feel free to contact us on (02) 8765 1555 or send a message via our contact page.

PLEASE NOTE: More details on how to apply for the HomeBuilder grant can be found on the NSW Government ‘Revenue NSW’ website here. Given HomeBuilder’s limited timeframe, it is still wise to start talking to builders now, but please note that homeowners (not builders) will be responsible for applying for the grant.