Using the Flisp/First Home Finance subsidy on your first property

Most South Africans find it challenging to buy property. To make real estate more accessible to the previously disadvantaged (and those struggling the most), the government decided to subsidise properties that adhere to certain restrictions. FLISP – or  Finance Linked Individual Subsidy Programme (FLISP) stands as a beacon of hope for first-time homebuyers in South Africa, offering a pathway to affordable homeownership. The name was recently changed to First Home Finance & Subsidy Assistance (First Home).

Understanding First home finance & subsidy Assistance 

First Home targets South African citizens or permanent residents with a monthly income ranging from R3,501 to R22,000. Its primary goal is to help those who have never benefited from a government housing subsidy scheme. This initiative is a stepping stone toward realising homeownership aspirations for individuals meeting the eligibility criteria.

How First home finance & subsidy assistance Works

The application process involves several steps that would make you spill your coffee – you need a load of paperwork, signed-off paperwork, copies of everything and a lot of patience. The hardest thing to get is an AIP or Approval in Principle from the bank. Most mortgage originators can assist with the pre-approval and submission to the bank. I recommended Ooba.

Eligible applicants must obtain an “Approval in Principle” for a home loan or an unsecured loan from an accredited South African financial institution. The subsidy amount granted is contingent upon the individual’s monthly income and can vary between R30,001 and R130,505.

First Home offers three different property acquisition options: purchasing an existing, new, or old residential property; acquiring a vacant serviced residential stand linked to an NHBRC-registered homebuilder contract; or constructing a home on a self-owned serviced residential stand or tribal stand through an NHBRC-registered homebuilder.

Eligibility Criteria for 

Applicants aiming to qualify for First home finance & subsidy assistance must fulfil several prerequisites:

  • South African citizenship or possession of a permanent residence permit.
  • Age of 18 or older, or being legally married or divorced.
  • A household income ranging between R3,501 and R22,000 per month.
  • Ability to secure a home loan from a bank.
  • Absence of prior benefit from a First home finance & subsidy assistance subsidy.
  • No ownership of any other residential property or previously owned fixed residential property.

The Benefits of FLISP

Honestly, it’s simple – having to pay less money into your home loan makes a huge difference in your cash flow. This reduction in the loan amount subsequently makes the monthly loan repayments more manageable over the repayment term – and you can get onto the property ladder.

How to Apply

To embark on the journey towards securing  First home finance & subsidy assistance support, applicants need to connect with the Department of Infrastructure or their local municipality. Submission of essential documents such as identification, birth certificates, and proof of residency permits (if applicable), duly stamped and signed by a Commissioner of Oaths, is a pivotal part of the application process. Here is an article on how to get your home loan approved.


First Home Finance & Subsidy Assistance (FLISP) is a testament to the South African government’s commitment to providing accessible homeownership opportunities for its citizens. I think the idea is awesome, but its implementation can sometimes exclude quite a few people. From my conversations with people on Twitter, it seems that the people who need it are often bypassed through the red tape. Nonetheless, some people can get some discount at least.

Happy investing!


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