The lump sum advance payment can be instead of, or in addition to your fortnightly loan payment.
To get an advance payment of the loan, you must:
- meet the eligibility criteria for the Home Equity Access Scheme
- have taken less than 2 loan advances in the last 26 fortnights
- be under your maximum loan amount
- have advanced less than 50% of your maximum pension rate.
How much you can advance
You can advance up to 50% of the maximum pension rate of your qualifying pension in any 26 fortnight period. You can take the full amount as one advance payment, or advance a smaller amount. But you can’t get more than 2 advance payments in any 26 fortnight period.
We add the advance payment to your loan balance when we pay it to you. The loan balance accrues interest on a fortnightly basis.
Any advance payment taken may reduce the fortnightly loan amount you can get for a period of 26 fortnights. You can always top-up your fortnightly payment to 100% of your maximum pension rate. Use our Home Equity Access Scheme calculator to help estimate how an advance payment might affect you. You’ll get a more accurate result if you log into myGov and use the calculators through your Centrelink online account.
How to apply
If you already have a loan
If you already have a Home Equity Access Scheme loan, you can apply for an advance payment online.
Sign in to myGov and go to Centrelink.
Go to your HEAS Summary page and select the Advance Payment option.
If you don’t have a Centrelink online account, you can:
- complete the Home Equity Access Scheme variation form
- call the Older Australians line
- go to a service centre.
If you don’t have a loan with us
If you don’t currently have a loan with us, you need to apply by submitting a claim. You can select the advance payment option in the claim.
If you get a pension
Advance payments of loans under the scheme may impact your rate of pension because they’re both:
- subject to deeming provisions under the income test
- assessable under the assets test
You need to tell us if you use the advance payment to buy another asset, like a car or shares.
If you used your principal home to secure the loan
If you used your principal home as security for the loan the advance won’t count for the assets test for the first 90 days.
To ensure we assess your advance payment under the income and assets tests correctly, we do both of these:
- record your advance payment as a financial investment on your record
- automatically apply the asset test exemption for 90 days.
You can view and update the advance payment details in your Centrelink online account. Keep your details up to date when you use your advance payment. For example, if you pay a bill with it, update the details in your Centrelink online account. This will help you keep track of your balance, including if this is zero.
If you don’t, we’ll contact you before the asset test exemption ends to check your details are correct.
To view or update your advance payment details, sign in to myGov and go to Centrelink. Go to the Banking module in the Income and Assets Summary.