• Tax Advice

Unlock your Home with First Home Super Saver Scheme

Purchasing your first home is an exciting milestone yet financially daunting. But the Australian government has made it easy to achieve your dream. They have launched the First Home super saver scheme. This initiative leverages the power of your superannuation fund to help you save for a home deposit more efficiently.

Let’s find out more about this tax-effective way to accumulate savings!

About the First Home Super Saver scheme

The First Home Super Saver scheme is an Australian government initiative designed to help first-time home buyers. It enables them to save for a deposit more efficiently by leveraging their superannuation fund. It was introduced in the 2017-18 Federal Budget. This scheme aims to ease the financial burden of buying a first home. Thus, providing a tax-effective way to save through the superannuation system.

This scheme enables you to make voluntary contributions to your super fund. This includes both before-tax concessional and after-tax non-concessional contributions. If you meet the eligibility criteria, you can have voluntary contributions released up to a limit. These contributions help you purchase your first home.

You are eligible for a maximum of $15,000 per financial year from your voluntary contributions. The overall limit across all years is $50,000.

Moreover, you will receive associated earnings. They are calculated based on the deemed rate which is determined using the Shortfall Interest Charge (SIC) rate. The deemed rate may differ from the actual earnings on those contributions in your fund.

Suggested Read:  Guide to Maximizing Your Super Contribution

Changes to the First Home Super Saver Scheme

The First Home Super Saver Scheme is going to undergo some changes from 15 September 2024.

On 11 May 2021, the Australian Government announced a modification to the FHSS scheme as part of the 2021-2022 federal budget. These changes were aimed at improving the experience for the first home buyers and providing greater flexibility. This can be done by:

  • Increasing the discretion of the Commissioner of Taxation to amend and revoke FHSS scheme requests.
  • Allowing individuals to withdraw or amend their request before receiving an FHSS scheme amount.
  • Enabling those who withdraw their request to reapply for FHSS scheme releases in the future.
  • Confirming that the Commissioner can return the released FHSS scheme amounts to super funds. Given that the money has not yet been released to the individual.
  • Clarifying that the money returned to super funds is treated as non-assessable, non-exempt income for the funds. Also, it does not count towards the individual’s contribution cap.

These changes will be in effect from 15 September 2024 with some changes applying retrospectively from 1 July 2018.

Eligibility criteria for First Home Super Saver Scheme

The following are the conditions of eligibility for the FHSS scheme:

  • You are 18 years of age or older when requesting FHSS determination or release of money under the scheme.
  • You haven’t previously requested an FHSS release.
  • You intend to occupy the purchased property as soon as possible. Moreover, you intend to occupy it as soon as possible for at least 6 months within the first year you own it after it is feasible to move in
  • You have never owned a property in Australia. This includes an investment property, commercial property, vacant land, a lease of land in Australia, or a company title interest in land in Australia.

But if you have suffered a financial hardship, then you are eligible even if you have previously owned property in Australia. Given that the financial hardship has caused the loss of all property interest ownership. The following events could be the reason:

  • Illness
  • Loss of employment
  • Bankruptcy
  • Natural disaster
  • Divorce, separation from a de-facto partner, or a relationship breakdown

Note: It is not necessary to be an Australian citizen or Australian resident for tax purposes to use the FHSS scheme.

How to apply for FHSS hardship provision

If you want to be considered under the FHSS financial hardship provision, the following are the methods you can use to apply:

  1. Log in to ATO online services through myGov
  • Click on Super > Manage > First Home Saver
  • After answering the first three questions in the FHSS determination, click to submit a hardship application form
  1. Complete a First Home Super Saver scheme hardship application form on the ATO website.

Note: it is compulsory to provide evidence with your application. The evidence should show the connection between property loss and hardship events.

Also, you should meet the following conditions at the time of application:

  • You are 18 years of age or more
  • You have not previously requested an FHSS release under the scheme.
  • You do not have a subsequent interest in real property in Australia since the property loss from financial hardship.

How to apply for Releasing your First Home Super saver savings

To receive your FHSS amounts, to have to apply to ATO for FHSS determination and then FHSS release. The process consists of two steps.

1. Requesting a determination

To request a determination, you need to sign in to myGov. If you don’t have a myGov account, create your account. Then link it to ATO. After signing in, click on Australian Taxation Office > Super > Manage > First home saver.

When applying for the determination, ATO tells you your maximum FHSS release amount.

You must:

  • Only include eligible contributions in your request
  • Use the date of receiving the contribution by your super fund.

2. Requesting the release

Once you have the determination, you can now request a release of your amount when you are ready to buy your new home.

Remember that you:

  • Can not apply for the release more than once
  • Confirm in the application that you will not claim any further tax deductions on the non-concessional contributions included in the determination.

 But before requesting the release, make sure that:

  • You have made all the voluntary contributions intended
  • The provided information is correct
  • You’ve resolved any issues with the determination
  • Agree with the amount in your determination
  • If you see any error in your determination from the other side, object to it.

Now apply for the release. Follow these steps:

  • Sign in to myGov
  • Click on Australian Taxation Office > Super > Manage > First Home Saver

Note: You cannot apply for the release twice even if you have requested a lesser amount than your FHSS maximum release.

Types of eligible contributions under the First Home Super Saver Scheme

The following are the types of contributions under the FHSS scheme:

  • Voluntary concessional contributions

This includes salary sacrifice or contributions claimed under tax deductions.

  • Voluntary non-concessional contributions

This includes personal after-tax contributions where you haven’t claimed a tax deduction.


The first home super saver scheme provides a unique way to save for your first home. So, are you ready to take a step forward to your first home? Start by making voluntary contributions to your super fund.

Make your dream a reality!

Access Additional Information:

Stage 3 Tax Cuts 2024; Maximize your Financial Well-being

Role of Low Income Tax Offset in Tax Planning: Maximize Your Tax Benefits

Tax Free Threshold in Australia; Everything You Need to Know

  • Jaxon Rylah

    Jaxon Rylah, an Australian of diverse heritage, brings a wealth of expertise to his role as an Author at Taxly.ai. With over 5 years of experience in the field, Jaxon's deep understanding of accounting principles and regulations allows him to provide...



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