July 08, 2011
Would $7,000 convince you to buy a little further away?
Is the Newcastle area getting too congested, unfamiliar and/or unaffordable for you? Have you been considering selling up and buying a home a little further north, west or south, but are lacking the financial incentive to make the move?
Perhaps friends or family are contemplating upgrading or downgrading to a new home away from the big smoke and closer to you?
Our state government has just made that idea more tempting by introducing the Regional Relocation (Home Buyers Grant) Act 2011, which came into effect on 1 July.
It provides eligible applicants with a one-off payment of $7,000 to help with relocation costs involved with moving from their home within a metropolitan area, which includes the Newcastle City Council area, to a regional home that they purchase for up to $600,000 between now and 30 June 2015.
Note that applicants must occupy the regional home as their principal place of residence for at least 12 continuous months, starting within one year after the completion date of the purchase. Following the move, they must sell their metropolitan home within 12 months.
The Regional Relocation Grant is a nice incentive for owner occupiers who are keen to shift into a less congested area of New South Wales, whether for the short or long term. The dollars provided will surely cover the removalist, cleaning, waste collection, utility set up and other costs involved with moving home.
In terms of eligibility, Novocastrians do not need to make a big move north, south or west with their new purchase. The Port Stephens Council, Lake Macquarie Council, Cessnock Council and Maitland Council regions are all valid for this grant, as are the areas further regional of them. For some people this could mean relocating only a simple 10 minute drive away!
Alternatively, this could be an enticing enough offer for city-based family or friends to buy a new home closer to you sooner rather than later.
And I know there will be delighted smiles amongst those who had already made the decision to move in the next couple of years. They’ve just been handed thousands of dollars to get out of town. Some may make the change earlier than they had been planning.
I would say the government has released this incentive to help grow the populations of regional areas and encourage less congestion in metropolitan areas, so there is less pressure on city housing/infrastructure and more reason for companies and infrastructure to be installed in regional areas.
$7,000 is not to be sniffed at if you are already considering upgrading or downgrading your place of residence. It will probably be enough for some people to relocate, even for a limited period of time.
For more information about the grant, visit http://www.osr.nsw.gov.au/benefits/rrg/. Scroll down that page to the Council and Regional Relocation Grant Area Locator link to check out the council areas not covered by the grant.
NOTE: First home Buyers are not eligible