I would like to see my three kids get the benefit of buying a home before it’s too late and want to gift about $260,000. As a pensioner what do I need to consider before we start looking at properties ?
Lots of different things you should be looking into/considering before you start looking at properties:
1. If you are on the age pension (or any other Centrelink benefit) the $260,000 you gift towards your children will be counted as your asset and reduce your Centrelink entitlements for up to 5 years - will you be able to survive?
2. What level of asset protection do you want for your gift of $260,000? ie if something happens to one of your children (divorce, sued etc.) if you have no asset protection in place your $260,000 will disappear. Alternatively you could make this gift a 'loan' with no interest payable and callable by you at any time. There might be flow on effects to Centrelink here too.
3. Will you have your name on the title of the house/s bought? Again Centrelink & asset protection issues to work through, together with who & how will the reset of the house be paid for?
I'm sure there's a lot more to consider but the above three will get you started thinking.
I'd encourage you to speak to an estate planning lawyer if you are considering gifting that sort of money, you should make sure it's protected.
All the best.