Home Buying

First home buyers stamp duty guide

Luke Harris
Jul 22, 2021
Yard Financial Pty Ltd | ACN 623 357 513 | Australian Credit Licence 509481

Table of Contents

You'll come across many new terms as a first home buyer when looking for a property and home loan. One of these terms will likely be stamp duty. You may wonder what stamp duty is, how it's calculated and whether first home buyers need to pay stamp duty? 

This guide will take you through the basics of stamp duty and break down the concessions available in each state or territory. You can get more in-depth information on the stamp duty concessions available to first home buyers here.

What is stamp duty?

Stamp duty (sometimes referred to as land transfer duty or similar) is a tax you pay on certain purchases. Besides purchasing a property or land, stamp duty might be payable when buying a motor vehicle or insurance policy. Although it's a tax paid all across Australia, it is managed individually by each state and territory government.

How is stamp duty calculated?

Each state and territory sets the rate of stamp duty. You can use a stamp duty calculator to give you an idea of how much you'll be required to pay.

In general, stamp duty is calculated by multiple factors, including:

  • Whether it's an established property, off the plan or a new home or vacant land.
  • The location of the property or land.
  • The type of buyer you are, first home owners stamp duty may be different to other buyers.
  • Whether you're considered a foreign purchaser or are an Australian citizen.
  • Whether the property is an investment property or primary residence.

To use Yard's stamp duty calculator, you just need to enter the purchase price, the property location, property purpose and whether it's your first home. 

When is stamp duty paid?

You're required to pay stamp duty within 30 days of settlement. Your solicitor or conveyancer will usually organise to pay stamp duty on your behalf to your state or territory revenue department.

You may also be able to include the cost of stamp duty in the funds you borrow for your home loan. You'll need to remember that if you add stamp duty to your loan amount and it's over 80% of the property's value, you may be required to pay lender's mortgage insurance.

Do first home buyers pay stamp duty?

There are many concessions, exemptions and grants available for first home buyers. This may have you wondering do first home buyers pay stamp duty? The answer to this question will depend on the state or territory you purchase your property in. 

Stamp duty concessions and discounts state by state:

Below is the breakdown of how each state handles stamp duty for first home buyers, including links to the relevant state or territory revenues website to get more information.

Stamp duty for first home buyers in NSW

Concessions on stamp duty in NSW for first home buyers fall under the First Home Buyers Assistance Scheme (FHBAS). This scheme allows first home buyers in NSW to access a concessional rate of stamp duty or transfer duty or be exempt from paying it.

The FHBAS is available on purchases of existing property, new property or vacant land as long as the property is your primary place of residence. 

The NSW government increased the thresholds applied to the FHBAS scheme for purchases between 1 August 2020 and 31 July 2021. Thresholds will revert to previous levels from 1 August 2021.

1 August 2020 - 31 July 2021 concessions on stamp duty for first home buyers in NSW:

New property purchases Existing property purchases Vacant land purchases
New homes valued at less than $800,000, first time buyers can apply for a full exemption.

New homes valued between $800,000 and $1 million, first time buyers can apply for a concession based on the property's value.
Existing homes valued at less than $650,000, first time buyers can apply for a full exemption.

Existing homes valued between $650,000 and $800,000, first time buyers can apply for a concession based on the property's value.
Vacant land valued less than $400,000, first time buyers will be exempt from stamp or transfer duty.

Vacant land valued between $400,000 and $500,000, first time buyers will pay a concessional rate of duty.


1 July 2017 - 31 July 2020 and continuing from 1 August 2021 concessions on stamp duty for first home buyers in NSW:

New property purchases Existing property purchases Vacant land purchases
New homes valued at less than $650,000, first time buyers can apply for a full exemption.

New homes valued between $650,000 and $800,000, first time buyers can apply for a concession based on the property's value.
Existing homes valued at less than $650,000, first time buyers can apply for a full exemption.

Existing homes valued between $650,000 and $800,000, first time buyers can apply for a concession based on the property's value.
Vacant land valued less than $350,000, first time buyers will be exempt from stamp or transfer duty.

Vacant land valued between $350,000 and $450,000, first time buyers will pay a concessional rate of duty.


To work out how much stamp duty you have to pay, you can use Yard's stamp duty calculator. And to find out more about the concessions offered by the NSW Government, check their website.

Stamp duty for first home buyers in Victoria

First home buyers stamp duty in Victoria has multiple concessions that different types of purchasers can access. You may even be able to claim more than one concession, exemption or reduction in stamp duty depending on your circumstances.

The stamp duty concessions, exemptions and reductions available to first time buyers in Victoria include:

  • First home buyer duty concession or exemption. If you're purchasing a property as a primary place of residence and the property is valued at less than $600,000, you're exempt from stamp duty. If the property has a dutiable value of between $600,001 and $750,000, you may be eligible for a concession. Your contract of sale would need to be dated on or after 1 July 2017.
  • Off-the-plan property concession. If you're purchasing a property off-the-plan house and land package on or after 1 July 2017, you're eligible for concessions on your stamp duty. This amount will then be deducted from the dutiable value of your property when you apply for one of the other duty concessions or exemptions.
  • First home buyer with a family concession. If you have at least one dependent child and purchasing a property valued below $150,000, you're eligible for an exemption on stamp duty. You'll receive a concession if the property is valued below $200,000 but over $150,000. If you're purchasing with a partner, both of you must fulfil the eligibility requirements.

For you to receive these concessions, your property must be your primary place of residence.

To work out how much stamp duty you have to pay, you can use Yard's stamp duty calculator. And to find out more about the concessions offered by the Victorian Government, check their website.

Stamp duty for first home buyers in QLD

When it comes to stamp duty for first time buyers in QLD, there are two layers to the concessions you can receive. When purchasing a property in QLD, you can apply for the home concession on property values under $550,000. 

There are two additional concessions available specifically for first home buyers in QLD. These concessions are on top of the home concession, which is open to all buyers.

  • First home concession. If you're a first time buyer purchasing a property valued under $550,000 and be paying market value for the property if it's valued between $500,001 and $549,999. For properties $500,000 and less there is no stamp duty for first home buyers. To qualify, you must have never held an interest in any property in Australia previously nor claimed the first home vacant land concession.
  • First home vacant land concession. If you're purchasing vacant land to build your first home that is valued under $400,000 and be paying market value if it's valued between $320,001 and $399,999. The land must also be 100% vacant with no current building or part of a building on it when you purchase it. You can only build one home on the land also. You must not have held an interest in any property in Australia previously nor claimed the first home concession.

To work out how much stamp duty you have to pay, you can use Yard's stamp duty calculator. And to find out more about the concessions offered by the QLD Government, check their website.

Stamp duty for first home buyers in WA

If you're a first home buyer in WA and are eligible for the First Home Owners Grant, you can also access a concessional rate of stamp duty. You can also access a concession on your stamp duty as a first home buyer when purchasing an established home in WA.

Some value thresholds apply.

  • First home buyers purchasing a property valued at less than $430,000 are exempt from paying stamp duty.
  • First home buyers purchasing a property valued between $430,000 and $530,000 will pay a concessional rate of duty.
  • First home buyers purchasing a block of land valued at less than $300,000 are exempt from paying stamp duty.
  • First home buyers purchasing a block of land valued between $300,000 and $400,000 will pay a concessional rate of stamp duty.

If your property exceeds these value thresholds, you can check the WA Government website to see if you're eligible for the residential rate of duty.

To work out how much stamp duty you have to pay, you can use Yard's stamp duty calculator. And to find out more about the concessions offered by the WA Government, check their website

Stamp duty for first home buyers in SA

The SA Government ceased offering any concessions on stamp duty for first home buyers on 30 June 2018. Before this first home buyers were able to get a concession if they purchased an off-the-plan or substantially refurbished apartment.

First home buyers in SA can still access the First Home Owners Grant. To work out how much stamp duty you have to pay, you can use Yard's stamp duty calculator. And to find out more about what the SA Government offers first home buyers, check the website.  

Stamp duty for first home buyers in Tasmania

In Tasmania, first home buyers can get a concession only when purchasing an established property. If you're purchasing a new property, you're eligible for the First Home Owners Grant but don't receive any concessions on stamp duty.

The concession on stamp duty for first home buyers in Tasmania is a 50% reduction in your stamp duty when purchasing an established home. The value thresholds for your purchase are:

  • $400,000 or less for purchases with a settlement date between 7 February 2018 and 15 March 2021 inclusive.
  • $500,000 or less for purchases with a settlement date between 16 March 2021 and 30 June 2022 inclusive.

To work out how much stamp duty you have to pay, you can use Yard's stamp duty calculator and find out more about the concessions offered by the Tasmanian Government, check their website.

Stamp duty for first home buyers in ACT

From 1 June 2019, the ACT Government opened up the eligibility for a concession on stamp duty to all purchasers in the state, so it isn't specifically for first home buyers. You can also get the concession for all property types, whether it's a new or established property or a vacant block of land. 

The property must be your primary residence for a year within a year from the date of completion. The concession is capped at $35,910 from 1 July 2021. The household's total gross income, whether they are named purchasers or not, can't exceed the below income thresholds.

Number of dependent children Total gross income threshold
0 $160,000
1 $163,330
2 $166,660
3 $169,990
4 $173,320
5 or more $176,650


To work out how much stamp duty you have to pay, you can use Yard's stamp duty calculator. To find out more about the concessions offered by the ACT Government, check their website.

Stamp duty for first home buyers in NT

For first time buyers in NT, there are no specific concessions on stamp duty; however, all home buyers may apply for the Territory Home Owner Discount (THOD). The THOD is available to all buyers who are building or buying a new home or a vacant block of land on or before 30 June 2021. The property must be your principal residence and valued at $650,000 or less. If you enter your sales contract after 30 June 2021, you'll not be eligible for the THOD. 

To work out how much stamp duty you have to pay, you can use Yard's stamp duty calculator. To find out more about the concessions offered by the Northern Territory Government, check their website.

Do you qualify for a stamp duty exemption?

To find out if you qualify for any stamp duty exemptions or concessions as a first home buyer, check the government website of the state or territory you plan to purchase in. If you plan to buy a property in a different state to the one you currently live in, make sure to check the details of stamp duty in the state you're purchasing in.

There are many concessions and exemptions available on stamp duty for first home buyers, which will help you get into the property market sooner. To get a clearer idea of how much stamp duty you will be required to pay as a first home buyer, use Yard's stamp duty calculator.

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