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  • Writer's pictureEstelle Fletcher

Extension of the Work Commencement Date for the HomeBuilder Grant

If you successfully applied for the HomeBuilder Grant before the March 31 deadline in 2021, then there is an extension to the deadline for your construction work commencement date. Read on to find out everything you need to know, including answers to FAQs.

What is the revised construction commencement date deadline?

When the HomeBuilder Grant was first announced in 2020, successful applicants were required to start the construction work on their new home (or renovation) within six months of signing their building contract.

However, the deadline for the commencement date is now 18 months from the building (or renovation) contract signing date. This means that successful applicants who signed their contracts on March 31, 2021 will have until the end of September 2022 for work to commence. Those who signed their contracts earlier than that date will have even less time, or their deadlines may have already passed.

The work must be commenced by a licensed builder, but it cannot be done by an owner-builder on their own property. Owner-builders are ineligible for the HomeBuilder Grant.

Why has the HomeBuilder Grant commencement date been extended?

The commencement date has been extended due to delays in the availability of construction materials and tradespeople caused by:

COVID-19 supply chain issues, and

the repair work needed after recent natural disasters such as the floods in Queensland and New South Wales.

How much is the HomeBuilder Grant?

This depends on when you applied:

if you applied successfully before the end of 2020, then you are entitled to $25,000 tax-free.

if you applied successfully between 1 January 2021 and 31 March 2021 when applications closed, you are entitled to $15,000 tax-free.

When does the HomeBuilder Grant get paid?

If you have been a successful applicant, you will receive the HomeBuilder Grant when your new home build or renovation work starts and one of the following requirements is met:

1) the foundations have been laid on your new home build and the first progress payment has been made to your builder, or

2) after your renovation work has started and at least $150,000 has been paid to your builder, or

The payment will be made directly to you.

Who pays the HomeBuilder Grant?

Even though it’s a federal government scheme, it is paid through the relevant State or Territory government department. Those departments are listed below.

How many people successfully applied for the HomeBuilder Grant?

The latest available figures show that over 137,000 Australians have already accessed the HomeBuilder Grant. The vast majority (82%) have used it for new home builds.

What if my deadline has passed?

Unfortunately, it’s very likely that you will no longer be eligible for the HomeBuilder Grant.

However, you should check with your relevant State or Territory government department, especially if there have been extenuating circumstances. You could also try negotiating a suitable outcome with your builder.

Even though the HomeBuilder Grant deadline for work commencement has been extended, make sure you do everything you can to ensure the work on your new home or renovation starts before your deadline expires. Check your contract (and deadline) date and liaise regularly with your builder.

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