On July 1, 2023, a new program of the Ministry of Development and Technology “First Apartment” was launched, the purpose of which is to co-finance the purchase of an apartment or a single-family house by people aged up to 45. Its pillars are: saving with a premium under the Housing Account and a loan with a government subsidy for installments under the safe 2% loan, both supported by the state. Waldemar Buda, Minister of Development and Technology, informed that as of July 28, over 18,000 applications for preferential loans had been submitted to banks. What should you know about the program and its assumptions?
The long-announced program to support the purchase of the first apartment by people under 45 officially started on July 1, 2023. Although specialists argue that “Pierwsze Mieszkanie” is a safe and reliable solution that actually facilitates one of the most important investments in life, many people still doubts about what the program actually entails. Let’s take a look at the assumptions of the government housing program and see why it is worth joining.
The government’s “First Apartment” program has a basic goal: to support the purchase or construction of the first single-family house or apartment for people aged up to 45 who cannot buy it for cash. It is based on the Act of 26 May 2023 on state aid in saving for housing purposes, in force since 1 July this year. and on the amended provisions of the Act of October 1, 2021 on family housing loans and safe 2% loans. The program has two pillars: Konto Mieszkaniowe and a safe 2% loan. In both forms, the preference results from state subsidies, which are supposed to help in the purchase of the first flat.
As Waldemar Buda, the Minister of Development and Technology, assures: Interest in the program remains at a high level. Every day, the Ministry of Agriculture and Tourism and Bank Gospodarstwa Krajowego receive inquiries from potential beneficiaries asking for information on the conditions that must be met in order to use it. We also answer questions from representatives of banks participating in the program and independent credit advisors on an ongoing basis.
A government pillar supporting savers
The first pillar of the government program “First Apartment” supports people planning to save for the purchase of an apartment or a single-family house or its construction. Its participants can pay monthly amounts from PLN 500 to PLN 2,000 to a special housing account, the maintenance of which is free of bank commissions. This solution rewards the most thrifty: a person who takes advantage of this form of support over a period of 3 to 10 years and pays money at least 11 times each year will receive a special housing bonus.
The premium will be equal to the annual inflation rate or the rate of change in the price of a square meter of usable floor space of a residential building. The bonus is to be accrued each year and paid once, at the very end of the saving period. After that time, it can be released within five years. The Housing Account is an instrument operated by commercial banks that will sign an appropriate agreement with Bank Gospodarstwa Krajowego (BGK).
Savings are additionally interest-bearing in accordance with the bank’s offer (as a standard deposit or savings account), with the interest being exempt from Belka’s tax.
In addition, the structure of the Housing Account gives parents a chance to set aside money for the child’s future housing needs, because the Account can be opened for a minor from the age of 13.
Secure 2% credit for your first own M
The second pillar of the “First Apartment” program is a preferential housing loan. One person can receive a loan of PLN 500,000, while in the case of a married couple or parents with a child, the maximum amount is PLN 600,000. The loan can be obtained for housing on both the primary and secondary market, and the funds can be used to build a single-family house.
A safe 2% loan is a mortgage loan. Requires the ability to repay the loan. Pursuant to the provisions of the Act, the borrower’s own contribution may not be higher than PLN 200,000. It is also possible to combine the instrument with the “Apartment without own contribution” program by using the guarantee of Bank Gospodarstwa Krajowego replacing the own contribution. Subsidies from the state will apply for the first ten years of its repayment.
With a safe 2% loan, you can also complete the construction of a single-family house built using the economic method. In the case of a loan for the completion of the construction of a single-family house, the sum of the plot value, the construction work performed and the loan amount may not exceed PLN 1 million. The loan amount for a married couple or a couple with at least one child will then amount to PLN 150,000. The limit of PLN 100,000 is provided for a borrower who is finishing the house and runs a one-person household.
If the total value of the plot and commenced construction does not exceed the maximum allowable own contribution, i.e. PLN 200,000, PLN, then the borrower may apply for a safe 2% loan in the full amount (PLN 500 or 600 thousand).
Although support, according to the assumptions of “First Apartment”, is to be granted primarily to people who want to buy their first apartment, it can also be used in several other cases. Konto Mieszkaniowe can be opened by anyone who already owns a small (50-90 square meters) house or apartment, but only if they lived there with at least two children. In the case of a minimum of five children, the size limit does not apply. An obstacle to participation in the program is also not an inheritance acquired during the saving period, possession of a flat of any size located abroad, up to 50% of shares in an inherited flat or a flat or a house excluded from use.
“First Apartment” for Poles. The numbers speak for themselves
Both solutions proposed by the government enjoy growing popularity among Poles. The Ministry of Development and Technology estimates that approximately 30-40,000 jobs will be provided annually under the “First Apartment” programme. credits. No limits for subsidies to loans are planned for 2023, only in 2024 a total of PLN 941 million was reserved for them. This amount is expected to increase in the coming years. So far, agreements with BGK for the provision of a safe 2% loan have been signed by nine banks: PKO Bank Polski SA, Bank PEKAO SA, Alior Bank SA, VeloBank SA, SGB-Bank SA, Bank Spółdzielczy Rzemiosła in Kraków, Bank Spółdzielczy in Brodnica, Krakowski Bank Spółdzielczy in Krakow, Bank BPS and Cooperative Banks of the BPS Association. The Housing Account can be opened at Bank Pekao SA and Alior Bank.
The list of banks that participate in the program is published on the BGK website: https://www.bgk.pl/programy-i-fundusze/programy/prezent-mieszkanie/.
All information on both instruments of the “First Apartment” program can be found at https://www.gov.pl/web/mieszkanie-dla-ciebie/program- Dobrze-mieszkanie.