ONE OF the headline announcements from the Federal Government in Tuesday night’s budget was an additional $2 billion in low-cost financing through the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation (NHFIC).

This will further support the provision of social and affordable homes, bringing the total liability cap to $5.5 billion.

The increase to the liability cap of NHFIC’s Affordable Housing Bond Aggregator (AHBA) will support an additional 27,500 dwellings by underwriting the amount, especially young borrowers and those without the requisite deposit sought by banks.

Usually, home buyers with less than a 20% deposit need to pay lenders mortgage insurance. Under this scheme, part of an eligible home buyer’s home loan from a Participating Lender will be guaranteed by NHFIC.

This is aimed at enabling people to purchase their first home sooner with as little as a 2% deposit.

Overall, the Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said the measures announced in the Budget on Tuesday night would help fund needy Australians into 50,000 new homes.

He also announced a significant ‘Stronger Regions’ package offering $500 million more to local councils to spend as they see fit on worthy projects, $1.2 billion more for better mobile coverage on regional routes, $2 billion for education projects specifically in regional areas, more for access to health including MRIs and an additional $1.3 billion to combat violence against women, building on the $1.2 billion allocated to the same problem last year.

The commentators are also saying that the regions are set to cash in a $20 billion funding bonanza for regional roads, bridges, dams and other infrastructure as a result of the National Party supporting the government’s whole-of-economy plan to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

There’s also more funding for mental health support, including for suicide prevention.

Upfront there’ll also be a $420 tax bonus this financial year for low to middle income earners and those on fixed incomes, and a reduction in the fuel excise amounting to 22 cents per litre (about $30-a-week for six months).

There’s $15,000 in wage subsidies for businesses taking on new apprentices and a 120% incentive to train staff and develop technology.