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How to make the most of the government’s HomeBuilder grant

What you need to know about the government’s renovation grants

In the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, the Australian government has made $25,000 grants available to help the construction sector get back on track. These funds can be put toward building a new home or for major renovations to your existing home.


Key eligibility criteria:

  • Work must be signed off between 4th June and 31st December 2020, with work starting within 3 months of the contract date.
  • The work must be carried out on your principal place of residence (investment properties are ineligible) and the pre-renovated property cannot be worth more than $1.5 million.
  • The value of new builds cannot exceed $750,000.
  • The work must be valued between $150,000 and $750,000.


To qualify:

  • You must be 18 years or older and you cannot apply as a company or trust.
  • You must be an Australian citizen who did not earn more than $125,000 in the 2018-19 financial year as an individual or more than $200,000 as a couple.


You can view the HomeBuilder Fact Sheet or the HomeBuilder Frequently Asked Questions Sheet to find out more about eligibility, how to apply and other useful information.


before and after modern renovation bathroom design


Getting the most from your house improvement grant

The biggest ticket items for any home improvement project are kitchen and bathroom renovations. For owner-occupiers that have been planning a major renovation to their homes, the HomeBuilder grant could easily cover the entire cost of a new bathroom or kitchen update.


Invest in professional advice

To get great value from your renovation spend, it might be worth using your grant money to engage the services of a qualified architect. They can review your house plans to come up with novel solutions that get the best use from your existing floor space.

Alternatively, you can allow plenty of room in your budget for safe collection and disposal of hazardous materials like asbestos, whitegoods and appliances.


Kitchen renovation ideas

Kitchens are often the heart and entertainment hub of the home. Butler’s pantries have become a popular addition in kitchen design to keep prep and mess out of sight. These usually come equipped with a second sink and bench space but can be used to house extra fridge/freezer space or coffee-making facilities.

A kitchen island is a great way to open up your living spaces without losing functionality. Island benches can be fitted with cooktops and range hoods, storage, or even entertainment or prep sinks.

Wall ovens are an ingenious way to save space or even incorporate a second oven if you love to bake or entertain. Better still, their easy access design means no more bending down to check on cooking progress, or to lift heavy trays.

Other hot design trends for kitchen remodels include taps on flexible hoses, split-drawer dishwashers, garbage disposal units and wine fridges.


Before and after bathroom renovation


Bathroom renovation ideas

Not sure what to include in a bathroom remodel? Popular modern bathroom design trends increasingly include recessed toilet cisterns and “floating” toilets. These sleek designs create more space in your bathroom and make cleaning quicker and easier. His and hers basins – even double showers – also make great additions if you have adequate space.

However, there are even better ways to get the most from your bathroom makeover. While it’s easy to focus on a roomy modern shower or a sleek new toilet, a renovation is also the perfect time to upgrade your hot water system. Especially if you have a growing family with expanding water needs. There are hot water systems to suit homes of every size and make the best use of your available space.

You might also want to consider a water softener/filtration system for your entire home. Whether you harvest your own rainwater or use treated municipal water, this upgrade not only provides better-tasting drinking water but reduces the need to use chemicals or buy bottles of water, which is a great win for the environment.


Other home renovation ideas to consider

Don’t forget to consider the less glamorous aspects of your home during your renovation. Check your roof and guttering for leaks, rust or signs of damage. This could also be the ideal time to invest in a new air-conditioning system, underfloor heating or insulation.


Before and after modern renovation


Do I need a permit to renovate my bathroom or kitchen?

Regulations around building permits will vary from state to state. However, in most states, the sort of major renovations this type of grant is intended to support will likely require council approval. This would include things like extending, adding or removing walls, changing plumbing or any other significant works.

The HomeBuilder grant requires work to be carried out by a licensed builder, so they can advise you on what work will be required and should be able to arrange relevant permits for you.

For all your renovation plumbing needs, including gas appliance or hot water system installation, contact the team at Chiswick Plumbing today.