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Stamp duty is payable on the majority of real estate transactions in the ACT, but depending on the type of real estate you are purchasing, you may be eligible for a stamp duty concession, bonus or exemption.

There is Government assistance available to a number of owner-occupier buyers to make purchasing a home more affordable.

The following categories of buyers that may be eligible for Government assistance include:-

  • First home buyers;
  • New home buyers;
  • Pensioners; and
  • Persons over 60 years of age.

The criteria for each of these schemes is complicated and changes regularly and the notes below are intended as a guide only.

Home Buyer Concession Scheme

The Home Buyer Concession Scheme is designed to help home buyers to purchase new or substantially renovated properties by charging duty at a concessional rate.

The concession is available for properties that are valued below $562,000.00 for new properties and $304,900.00 for vacant blocks of land (as at 1 January 2016).

Eligibility for the Scheme is means tested and there are also certain asset tests.

First Home Owner Grant

As at 1 January 2016 the amount of the First Home Owner Grant is $10,000.00. The Grant is available to first home buyers purchasing their first home.

It is available only for new or substantially renovated properties in which the total value of the property is below $750,000.00 (as at 1 January 2016).

Pensioner Duty Concession Scheme and Over 60’s Home Bonus Scheme

These schemes are designed to assist eligible persons looking to find new accommodation that better suits their needs by charging duty at a concessional rate.

The property being purchased must be valued below $807,000.00 for an established property and $391,700.00 for a vacant block of land (as at 1 January 2016).

To be eligible for the Schemes an applicant must be either:

  1. An aged pensioner;
  2. In receipt of a disability support pension and over 50;
  3. Have the benefit of a Department of Veteran’s Affairs Gold Card; or
  4. Simply be over the age of 60.

Eligibility for the scheme is also subject to certain asset tests.

Please note that this article is based on concessions and criteria applicable as at 1 January 2016.

If you or someone you know is looking at purchasing real estate, and would like further information on the types of concessions and schemes which may be available to them, please contact Emma Bragg at Tetlow Legal on (02) 6140 3263 or [email protected].

Current as at 16 February 2016