Transactions entered into on or after 1 July 2019
The HBCS applies to vacant residential land and both new and established homes for transactions entered into on or after
1 July 2019.
To claim the HBCS, you need to meet the following requirements:
- all buyers of the home or land must be at least 18 years old; and
- the total gross income of all buyers including their partners (if any) must not be greater than the relevant total gross income threshold amount. A partner includes your spouse, civil union partner, civil partner or de facto partner; and
- all buyers including their partners (if any) must satisfy a current and previous home ownership test; and
- at least one buyer must satisfy the residence requirements.
For transactions entered into on or after 1 July 2019, the HBCS applies to the purchase of vacant residential land and both new and established homes.
There are no property thresholds applicable for transactions entered into on or after 1 July 2019.
To be eligible for the HBCS you must satisfy the total gross income test. The total gross income of all home buyers and their partners (if any) over the full financial year before the transaction date must be less than or equal to the relevant total gross income threshold in the table below.
Your partner’s income must be included, even if the partner will not be an owner of the home.
Total gross income threshold amount
Number of dependent children
Total gross income threshold
5 or more
Every buyer of the home must not have owned any other properties in the two years leading up to the transaction date, with limited exceptions*. This requirement also applies to the partner of a buyer, even if the partner will not be an owner of this home.
* Exceptions include court orders and agreements made under the Family Law Act 1975 and the Domestic Relationships Act 1994.
At least one person who will own the home must live in the home continuously for at least one year, beginning within 12 months of settlement date or completion of construction.
The Commissioner for ACT Revenue can exempt you from the residence requirements, in full or in part, but only if:
- you cannot live at the home because of an unavoidable or unforeseen circumstance, such as a health-related issue; and
- you request an exemption in writing no later than 18 months after:
- the settlement date (for an eligible home)
- the date you receive the Certificate of Occupancy and Use once construction of the new home is finished (for vacant land).
Buyers who do not meet the residency requirement and that do not have an exemption will need to pay full duty. Penalty tax or interest may also apply if the requirements are not met.
If you have any concerns about your residency, you should contact us as early as possible.
For further information on eligibility requirements please see Revenue Circular GEN011.
What happens next?
If you have assessed your self as being eligible for the HBCS you should record the applicable code on your transfer instrument. We'll issue you a Notice of Assessment for duty with the concession applied. You do not have to take any further action, unless your circumstances change, in which case you will need to notify our office.
After you’ve received your assessment, we may contact you to verify your eligibility for the HBCS. For example, we may require you to give us copies of any documents that support your eligibility, or we may ask you to prove your residency at the home. You need to keep copies of your supporting documents for at least five years after the transaction.
We review claims and conduct investigations into the HBCS on an ongoing basis.