Help with first home

By Benalla Ensign

The great Australian dream of home ownership will now be in reach for many Victorian first home buyers, thanks to a $50million shared equity pilot program launched by the Victorian Government.

Bendigo Bank has been selected as a lender of choice by being appointed as one of only two panel financiers in the HomesVic scheme, which will assist up to 400 low to moderate income-earning Victorians to enter the property market.

Under the scheme, HomesVic will provide funding and take a proportional beneficial interest of up to 25 per cent in the property, subject to successful applicants meeting eligibility criteria.

Bendigo Bank managing director Mike Hirst said the scheme demonstrated the bank’s commitment to home ownership for first home buyers.

‘‘It can be difficult for first home buyers to get into the housing market,’’ Mr Hirst said.

‘‘Given the run-up in property prices we have seen over the last few years as Victoria becomes a sought-after place to live, often they may find it tough to save the deposit they need to purchase a property.

‘‘We’re pleased to partner with the Victorian Government to allow first home buyers to enter the market sooner.

‘‘Helping them to achieve their goal, while being part of creating the opportunity that this scheme will bring to future first home buyers, is entirely in keeping with the role we believe banks should play in the economy.’’

Eligibility criteria for the HomesVic scheme have been set by the Victorian Government.

An applicant must:

●Be an Australian citizen or permanent resident.

●Be aged 18 years.

●Have been a Victorian resident for two years.

●Not have a gross taxable income (including salary sacrifice) of more than $75000/year for a sole person, or $95000/year for a multiple person household.

●Have a minimum of five per cent of the purchase price of the property in genuine savings.

●Be unrelated to the seller of the property being purchased.

●Use the property being purchased as their primary place of residence.

●Have no more than $10000 in existing outstanding debt or credit limits.

●Applicants can register expressions of interest by phoning 84147744 or visiting the Bendigo Bank website. For more information, go to the HomesVic website.