ADF Housing entitlements

how & when to use dhoas: explained

The DHOAS Scheme was designed to incentivise members to stay in the ADF – the longer you serve, the more entitlement you accrue and the longer you can receive assistance.

The Defence Home Ownership Assistance Scheme (DHOAS) is a subsidy and home loan scheme available for current and former Australian Defence Force members. It is designed to assist ADF members and their families in repaying their defence home loan and achieve homeownership easier.

 

The Australian Government has announced a $46.2 million expansion of the Defence Home Ownership Assistance Scheme, aiming to improve access to home ownership for eligible defence personnel earlier in their careers.

 

The changes will allow veterans who served on or after 1 July 2008 to access the scheme at any stage after they have left the service.

From 1 January 2023, the eligibility criteria for the scheme for each subsidy tier will be expanded by:

-Halving the minimum service required for access by current ADF members from four to two years for permanent service, and from eight to four years for Reserve service.

-Removing the access cap altogether for veterans who have left the service (previously five years).

 

To be eligible, you must have:

  • Served on or after 1 July 2008
  • Completed a qualifying period of service and accrued sufficient entitlement

 

How much you’re entitled to is calculated as a percentage of the average house price, and split into three tiers based on service length. These are:

  • 40% of the AHP at Tier 1
  • 60% of the AHP at Tier 2
  • 80% of the AHP at Tier 3 (the maximum benefit!)

DHOAS Subsidy and Defence Home Loan Conditions

Subsidy Tier Minimum Permanent Service Minimum Reserve Service Subsidised Loan Amount Maximum Monthly Subsidy*
1
2 years
4 years
$364,916
Up to $536
2
4 years
8 years
$547,373
Up to $804
3
8 years
12 years
$729,831
Up to $1,073

As of 1 July 2023, the AHP is $912,289. This figure is used to determine the 2023-24 subsidy tier values.*Estimated monthly subsidy values based on the December 2023 median interest rate. These monthly subsidy values fluctuate based on changes in the median interest rate.

 

You can see that you have to wait four years of service before you gain access to DHOAS. We recommend that you wait until you have done at least four years of service before you pull the trigger. This is for either of two reasons:

1- So you can have a higher monthly subsidy (about an extra $260 per month stays in your pocket) or;

2- So you can use four years of your service in a lump sum – very useful to top up your cash buffer after you have purchased your home.


The real kicker is the main condition of receipt – you and/or your family must occupy the home for at least 12 months and you will need to be occupying the home and holding a valid subsidy certificate before your subsidy payments will commence.

Lump Sum Option

Under certain circumstances, you may be eligible to have your subsidy paid out as a lump sum. If you have accrued sufficient entitlement, you can convert up to four years of your service into a lump sum payment. 

 

This equates to $536 per month x 4 years [48 months] = $25,728. This can be especially useful if you’re looking to fast-track your housing investment, but will only be applicable in some situations.

Pro Tip for Couples

The DHOAS Scheme was designed to incentivise members to stay in the ADF – the longer you serve, the more entitlement you accrue and the longer you can receive assistance.


If you have both served more than 4 years, you can get the subsidy for a loan up to $1,094,746 (2 x $547,373) and receive a monthly allowance of $1,608 (2 x $804). Now, that is a massive chunk off your monthly repayments!

DHOAS Home Loan Providers

Defence and DHOAS loans are different from typical home loans in that you must apply for one through one of three approved providers. 

 

There are a range of DHOAS Loans available from the three providers, making it easy to find one that suits your needs. Additionally, many defence home loans have low rates and are quite flexible. If you’re not sure which one is right for your needs, Axon’s property coaches can help you choose.

Australian Military Bank

Defence Bank Limited (Defence Bank)

National Australia Bank (NAB)

How is DHOAS Caculated?

The subsidy is calculated at 37.5% of the interest payable over the life of a 25-year loan based on the DHOAS median interest rate. Use the DHOAS Calculator to work out your entitlement.

 

Steps:
Enter your DHOAS home loan balance, up to your eligible tier levels subsidised loan (do not use dollar signs or any commas/full stops. E.g: $750,000 is entered as 750000

Please note: This calculator provides an estimate only of your DHOAS subsidy payment, based on a given loan amount and interest rate. The actual subsidy you are able to receive will depend on many different factors. If you would like a formal estimate of your subsidy amount, you should consider submitting an application for a subsidy certificate.

Complete Our Free ADF Training!

HOW TO BE A PROPERTY OWNER WITH YOUR ADF HOUSING ENTITLEMENTS: DHOAS, HPAS & HPSEA

In this FREE training you are going to find out: