South Australian first homebuyers are rallying behind Treasurer Joe Hockey’s comments on considering proposals that would enable young Australians to use superannuation to buy their first home.
More than 65% of South Australian first homebuyers would be willing to dip into their superannuation savings to help fund a home deposit, according to new research from HomeStart Finance.
Of these, a total of 63% already had superannuation balances greater than $20,000 and 47% earned more than $50,000 per year.
HomeStart chief executive John Oliver said the results highlighted that a proposal to enable first home buyers to access superannuation to fund a home deposit would be likely to receive strong support among its target demographic.
“It is disappointing that potential homebuyers with secure employment, a reasonable level of income and are in a good position to service a home loan can’t actually buy a home because they don’t have enough money saved to get started,” he said.
“HomeStart takes the view that there are two long-term assets that most people aspire to by the end of their working life – owning a home and having a superannuation balance that provides for a comfortable retirement.”
Whilst those against the idea argue that it could impact a person’s financial security come retirement, Oliver says with mandatory replenishment and the ownership of an asset, Australians will be better off.
“The concern that a person’s superannuation balance would be forever impacted by drawing on it for a home deposit is understandable. But the majority of the money would be replenished over time and at retirement, a person is likely to own a significant asset that may not have been possible if not for the assistance they received,” he said.
The real gripe for Oliver is that a struggling homeowner can tap into their super during financial difficulty, but a creditworthy first homebuyer can’t.
“One of the real ironies is that if you are struggling to make house repayments and are on the cusp of being evicted, you can make and application on hardship grounds to get access to your superannuation. Yet we do not allow good, creditworthy people access to superannuation at a time when they need it.”