First home buyers and construction sector win in housing stimulus

The WA Government will provide further economic support and introduce a targeted housing stimulus, to assist the local housing market and construction sector in Western Australia.

While the current housing market is creating opportunities for first home owners, banks have tightened their lending standards creating a barrier to some people realising their dream.

The WA Government initiative will help potential first home owners get around these barriers by temporarily relaxing Keystart criteria to allow more people into the scheme.

Keystart is a State Government-owned mortgage lender, helping home buyers who meet certain criteria purchase an owner occupied property in WA.

Keystart’s existing income limits will increase by $15,000 for singles and couples and by $20,000 for families from July 1, 2019 to December 31, 2019, giving more people access to loans. The income limits will revert to the current levels from January 1, 2020.

The initiative will provide a much needed boost to the construction industry, with modelling showing the targeted stimulus will translate into the construction of hundreds of new homes – providing a boost for the housing construction industry and generating WA jobs.

Importantly the changes are timely and sensible, helping industry get through what it expects to be the bottom of the construction cycle.

The temporary changes to income criteria follows the WA Government’s $420 million extension of Keystart’s loan book in December 2018, boosting its lending capacity to $4.8 billion.

In 2017-18, Keystart approved a total of 2,789 loans, with 2,169 loans for construction or newly constructed homes.

Source: WA Government