South Australian government announces $8,500 grant for over 60 downsizers

South Australia’s Labor government has announced that it will commit $14 million for a new grant to assist people aged over 60 looking to downsize their home.

The $8,500 grant will be available for new builds valued up to $400,000, phasing out for homes valued up to $450,000. The government will reassess its $7 million per year commitment after two years.

The Property Council of Australia has been campaigning to remove roadblocks for downsizers. The executive director of the council’s South Australia division, Richard Angove, says the grant is a big win for its members.

“Labor’s grant will boost the construction of new homes and increase the supply of existing housing stock, providing greater opportunities for younger South Australians to take the first step to home ownership,” Angove said, pointing to the grant’s benefits beyond South Australians aged over 60.

“When you consider the gains made by extending the Housing and Construction Grant and securing partial Stamp Duty concessions on new apartments from 1 July 2014 until 30 June 2016, this policy is a positive step towards stimulating the development sector.”

However, this does come as information from IBISWorld suggests that baby boomers are actually looking to upsize rather than downsize, as a result of conditions surrounding the asset income test when receiving the pension. There is, however, a pilot scheme slated to assist with this issue and not penalise those who look to downsize.

jrichardson@propertyobserver.com.au

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