The first home super saver (FHSS) scheme was introduced by the Australian Government in the Federal Budget 2017–18 to reduce pressure on housing affordability.
The scheme allows you to save money for your first home inside your super fund. This will help first home buyers save faster with the concessional tax treatment of superannuation.
The scheme: For each $100 you save via your super fund with the scheme, you will be taxed $15 and net $85 towards your deposit savings for a home. (You can only withdraw 85% of concessional (pre-tax) amounts like Salary Sacrificed wages.)
Outside of Scheme: The same $100 after tax (net income from your wage) and put into a bank towards your deposit could be taxed at 32.5% leaving just $67.
You are better off by $18 on every $100 you do this with.
Now let’s add some zeros on.
The scheme: If you contribute $10,000 to the scheme ($200 a week) you will have $8500 towards your nest egg. (You can only withdraw 85% of concessional (pre-tax) amounts like Salary Sacrificed wages.)
Outside the scheme: If you took $200 a week and put into a bank account to save for a home it has just cost you $1800 because you didn't use the scheme and already been taxed on your marginal rate.
Please note these things:
1/ You must either live in the premises you are buying, or intend too as soon as practicable, or
you intend to live in the property for at least six months within the first 12 months you own it, after it is practical to move in.
2/ You must apply for and receive an FHSS determination from us, before signing a contract for your first home, or applying for release of your FHSS amounts.
3/ You then make voluntary concessional (before-tax) contributions into your super fund to save for your first home. Speak to your employer to get this done. Whatever you are saving now you can afford to save via the scheme, probably more.
4/ You can then apply to release your voluntary contributions, along with associated earnings, to help you purchase your first home.
5/ You can apply to have a maximum of $15,000 of your voluntary contributions from any one financial year included in your eligible contributions to be released under the FHSS scheme, up to a total of $30,000 contributions across all years. You will also receive an amount of earnings that relate to those contributions.
6/Superannuation guarantee contributions made by your employer, and spouse contributions cannot be released under the FHSS scheme.
7/ Eligibility is assessed on an individual basis. This means that couples can each access their own eligible FHSS contributions to purchase the same property. (this means you could access $60,000 towards your home as a couple across 2 years. ) We are 4 months into this financial year so get started asap and speak to your employer.
8/To withdraw your voluntary super contributions under the FHSS scheme, you need to request an FHSS determination from the ATO. Apply online using your myGov account linked to online services.
When you apply for an FHSS determination you will be told your maximum FHSS release amount.
Changes made in 2019
You must apply for and receive a FHSS determination from us before signing a contract for your first home or applying for the release of your FHSS amounts.
You can sign a contract to purchase or construct your home either:
from the date you make a valid request to release your FHSS amounts
up to 14 days before you make a valid request to release your FHSS amounts.
You no longer must wait until the first FHSS amount is released to you to sign a contract to purchase or construct your home.
You have 12 months from the date you make a valid release request to sign a contract to purchase or construct your home and notify us within 28 days of signing.
This advice is general in nature, and it is advised that you first speak to your Accountant about your own unique situation prior to proceeding with this scheme.