Who is eligible?4
You can start making super contributions from any age. However, you must be 18 years old or older to request a determination or a release of amounts under the FHSS scheme.
Also, you must have:
- never owned property in Australia – this includes an investment property, vacant land, commercial property, a lease of land in Australia, or a company title interest in land in Australia (unless the Commissioner of Taxation determines that you have suffered a financial hardship)
- not previously requested the Commissioner to issue an FHSS release authority in relation to the scheme.
Eligibility is assessed on an individual basis. This means that couples, siblings or friends can each access their own eligible FHSS contributions to purchase the same property. If any of you have previously owned a home, it will not stop anyone else who is eligible from applying.
How can I save in super?5
You can start saving by entering into a salary sacrifice arrangement with your employer to make voluntary contributions or by making voluntary personal super contributions.
You can contribute into any super fund(s) although contributions made to a defined benefit interest or a constitutionally protected fund will not be eligible to be released under the FHSS scheme.
Note: Some employers may not offer salary sacrifice arrangements to their employees.
Before you start saving you should:
- check that your nominated super fund(s) will release the money
- ask your fund about any fees, charges and insurance implications that may apply
- check that your super fund has your current contact details – ensure your name matches what we have
- be aware that if you receive FHSS amounts, it will affect your tax for the year in which you make the request to release. You will receive a payment summary and you will need to include both the assessable and tax-withheld amounts in your tax return.
For more information about the financial hardship provision you should speak to the ATO to determine if the financial hardship provision applies to you before you start saving. And, for more information about the type of contributions that are eligible and how to manage them speak to to the ATO or visit https://www.ato.gov.au/individuals/super/withdrawing-and-using-your-super/first-home-super-saver-scheme/ for more information.
How do I withdraw contributions under FHSS?6
To make a withdrawal under the scheme, an application to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) will be required. To be eligible to have the funds released as part of the FHSS you will need to meet the following requirements:
- Never owned any property in Australia, including an investment property, vacant land, commercial property, a lease of land or a company title interest in land in Australia, and
- You are only allowed one FHSS withdrawal in your lifetime.
It is important to understand that eligible contributions into your super for the FHSS include:
- Voluntary concessional contributions, such as salary sacrifice or contributions where a tax deduction has been claimed (usually taxed at 15% in your fund), and
- Voluntary non-concessional contributions that you have made. This type of contribution is made after tax or if a tax deduction hasn’t been claimed.
While the above are eligible contributions that can be withdrawn, there are super contributions which will not qualify and cannot be withdrawn under the scheme, such as Superannuation Guarantee contributions (which are those made by your employer), as well as spouse contributions (which are those that your partner may choose to put into your super fund).