HomeBuilder scheme is exceeding expectations

The response to the Federal Government's HomeBuilder scheme is exceeding expectations, but a requirement to start construction within three months is testing the capacity of the building industry.

The program provides $25,000 to people who build a new home or substantially renovate an existing one.

However the grants aren't handed out until work starts, meaning only 780 applicants have got their hands on funding so far.

More than 11,000 applications for the scheme have been approved, according to the latest data from Treasury.

The money is paid for new builds when the foundations are laid, for renovations when work commences, or for off-the-plan jobs when a name is registered on the title.

But in each case construction must commence within three months after the contract is signed unless there are "unforeseen factors outside the control of the parties to the contract (eg: building or planning approvals)", according to Treasury guidance.

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