Suburbs such as Spring Farm, West Hoxton and Werrington have emerged as the hottest market for new home buyers within New South Wales, government figures show.

As a massive shortage of stock has seen housing starts in the state soar to ten year highs, a listing of the top twenty suburbs and towns by receipt of first home owner grant assistance during 2013/14 shows that sixteen such localities lie in Sydney’s west.

Spring Farm in the South Western Growth Corridor topped the list, with home owners there raking in more than $7 million in assistance, including 260 grants for the construction of new homes and 395 grants for stamp duty relief on the purchase of vacant residential land, followed by West Hoxton, Werrington, St Marys and Liverpool (see chart).

Wollongong, where first home buyers ranked in $81,127,986, was the only locality outside of Sydney to rank in the top twenty.

Like most other states, New South Wales offers a range of incentives designed to assist first-home buyers to enter the market and to boost housing supply and affordability, including (in NSW’s case) a $15,000 grant to those who purchase newly constructed homes and exemptions from transfer duty for those who purchase vacant land on which to build a home (subject to thresholds).

The government also allocated $83 million in the last budget toward local infrastructure projects aimed at unlocking new residential developments.

The latest figures come amid broader expectations of long term population growth and demand for housing within Sydney’s west.

According to a report published by the Department of Planning and Environment earlier this year, for example, the population of Camden in Sydney’s south-west is expected to almost triple from 58,400 to 149,250 between 2011 and 2031, whilst numbers of people living in nearby places like Liverpool, Penrith and Blacktown as well as Parramatta and Auburn in the north-west are expected to grow by around 50 percent over that time.

Because of this, massive amounts of investment are going into public infrastructure in the region, including a the $8.3 billion North West Rail Link from Chatswood to Parramatta, the South West Rail Link from Glenfield to Leppington and the 33 kilometer WestConnex road project linking Sydney’s west with the airport and Port Botany Precinct.

State Treasurer Andrew Constance welcomed the new report, which he says was evidence the incntives were helping first-home buyers get onto the property ladder, especially in Sydney’s west.

“We’ve got new home starts at 10-year highs, and a growing number of first time buyers taking advantage of those new builds in our vibrant west,” Constance said.

All up, the NSW government spent $224.5 billion on first home owner incentive schemes throughout the financial year.

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