A YourLifeChoices reader wants to know if combining two blocks will change her eligibility for the Age Pension under the assets test.
We are thinking of buying a property that has a house on one block of 2800 square metres and attached is another block on a separate title of 2900sqm. We want to change things so that we have one big block, that is, add the second block of land onto the title that the house is on. Will this come under the assets test?
A. The Centrelink rules for owning land are very strict, but Marianne will probably pass the assets test for this amount of land.
Your eligibility for the Age Pension is based on two tests, the income test and the assets test. As far as Centrelink is concerned, the assets test encompasses things such as financial assets, home contents, vehicles, real estate and superannuation pensions. But the item we are most interested in for this question is the real estate.
Under Centrelink rules, only two hectares of land on the same title of your home are exempt from the assets test.
Given the size of the blocks quoted above, they would easily come under that limit.
However, Marianne must combine the two blocks on one title before she applies for the pension, otherwise the block without the house will be considered an asset.
For more information on the assets test, read here.
There are exceptions to this two-hectare rule for rural customers of Centrelink. Read about them here.
Have you had your land evaluated for Centrelink purposes? Why not share your experience in the comments section below?