Date amended:
Maximum Home Equity Access Scheme loan available



Each fortnightly and lump sum payment made under the Home Equity Access scheme increases the amount owed by the participant under the scheme. Accordingly, payments will cease once the balance of the loan reaches the maximum loan available to the participant under the scheme.

The maximum loan available to a participant is calculated according to a set formula using the age component amount to set a loan limit as a percentage of secured assets.

The maximum loan amount increases on each relevant birthday taking into account the new age component amount and the latest asset valuation on the secured assets.

Calculating the maximum loan




Section 52ZCA(1) VEA - Maximum loan available under the Home Equity Access Scheme

Section 52ZCA(3) VEA - Age component amount table


VEA ? (go back)


The maximum loan available to a participant under the Home Equity Access Scheme can be calculated using the following equation:


Maximum loan  =  Age component amount  x  (value of real assets - nominated amount  /  $10,000

Age Component amount

in the case of members of a couple, the age component is based on the age of the YOUNGER partner on their last birthday,  Although the age component is drawn from a single person, each partner's share of the value of real assets is used to work out the maximum loan amount. 

Value held for real assets



If the value of a participant's real assets is greater than $10,000; their value is rounded down to the nearest multiple of $10,000. If the value of the real assets is less than $10,000; their value is taken to be nil.  A participant's real assets are to be reduced by the nominated amount.

Effect of nominated amount on maximum loan available

By nominating an amount and thereby excluding that portion of the asset value over which a charge is to be placed, also reduces the maximum loan available because it has the effect of reducing the value of real property.


A couple aged 72 and 68 years of age, offer property valued at $240,000 as security for a loan to each of them. The property is jointly owned by the couple, and they each have a nominated amount of $45,000. The younger partner's age is used to determine the age component ($2,850 at age 68), and the maximum loan available for each partner is calculated as follows:

·real assets equal $120,000 minus $45,000. After rounding, this comes to $70,000

·maximum loan for each member of a couple equals $2,850 multiplied by ($70,000 divided by $10,000) = $19,950

Note: Where one member of a couple owns a greater than 50% share of the securing property, a 50-50 arrangement will operate where the maximum loan available for an individual applicant of a member of a couple is based on 50% share of the securing property. This arrangement also applies to members of a couple who are qualified for but not receiving income support payments.

Assessing the fortnightly Home Equity Access Scheme loan rate



If a participant is eligible for payment under Home Equity Access Scheme, the loan rate is determined by either:

  • A top-up amount, comprising the difference between:

        * the rate of pension assessed under the normal income / assets test; and

        * 150% of the maximum pension rate including allowances, except remote area allowance, applicable to the person's circumstances, or

  • a lower amount nominated by the Home Equity Access Scheme participant.

A participant can choose between a fixed fortnightly loan payment and the maximum rate being 150% of the maximum rate of pension.

Assessing the lump sum amount under the Home Equity Access Scheme

Participants can request to receive an advance payment under the Home Equity Access Scheme. The advance payment is capped at 50% of the annual rate of pension and reduces the fortnightly Home Equity Access Scheme payments payable over the following 12 months. A maximum of two lump sum payments are available in a 12-month period.