Can I sell my home to my son?

June would like to sell her home to her son as a vendor financier but is unsure how Centrelink will assess her property and income received from interest paid.

Q. June

I was wondering if I sell my property (which is a farm) to my son and become the vendor financier, would the property be considered an asset or would I just be assessed on the interest received as income? Hence, I would receive less pension but would have pensioner benefits.

A. Under a vendor financier agreement, you generally retain ownership of the property until the final payment is made; therefore, you are still classed as a homeowner for Centrelink assessment. 

As you receive payments, the exempt value of the asset will decrease in Centrelink’s records. 

Any interest paid will be regarded as income, and you will be assessed on this basis. 

What you have to consider is whether Centrelink has your up-to-date property value on file. Centrelink can request an updated valuation and if you are trying to sell it for less than that valuation, it can be considered a deprived asset and will be assessed as such. 

This information is a general guide and you should confirm your details with Centrelink before progressing. It is also advisable that you seek independent financial advice before entering any financial agreement.

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