FIRST-home buyers in the Clarence Valley are set to benefit from a $15,000 hand-out to help with their purchase after the NSW Government announced the revamped
First Home Owners Grant, one of the more pleasant surprises to come out of the last week's NSW state budget.
Under the Building the State package, the grant, which is only available for new homes, will increase from $7000 to $15,000 on October 1, then drop to $10,000 from 2014.
Dan Kelly from Ray White Yamba said the increased level of incentive for first-home buyers will be a much-needed boost to the local property market after what has been a rather tough 18 months.
"Along with most people at the moment, first-home buyers are finding it hard to save the extra cash to satisfy the requirements of their lenders and with many lenders looking at the first-home owners grant as a form of savings for borrowers, this should make the process a lot easier for them," Mr Kelly said.
While Yamba itself is experiencing a land shortage, Mr Kelly said overall land sales have slowed slightly due to the price of existing homes retracting during the past two years, leaving first-home buyers with no real incentive to build a new home.
He said the grant would be welcomed by local builders, many of whom have been saying that something needed to be done to stimulate the industry.
Yamba-based builder Tony McFarlane believes any incentive would be a positive step forward and was likely to boost the industry, but says a more inclusive grant covering all first-home buyers, not just builders, would see a greater and more balanced influx.
"It is probably not putting as much strain on first-home buyers," Mr McFarlane said.