Lacklustre property market statistics in Tasmania reported by the Real Estate Institute of Tasmania (REIT) are being blamed on excessive red tape.
The March Quarter Property Report revealed a slight increase in house sales across Tasmania. However, REIT president Adrian Kelly was disappointed the strong December results had not carried through.
“Hobart house sales decreased this quarter, down 4.6 per cent and down 2.2 per cent on the same time last year,” said Mr Kelly.
“The north west centres saw the only increase in house sales, which were up 19.6 per cent for the quarter and 12.6 on the same time last year.
“Launceston suffered a substantial decrease in house sales for the quarter, recording a 23.8 per cent drop.”
After an increase of 8.8 per cent for the December quarter, house prices decreased by 5.8 per cent for the March quarter and 2.7 per cent over the year.
Mr Kelly said the report reinforced the industry could ill afford changes outlined in the Residential Property Transactions Bill, which would slow down house sales in what was already a very flat market.
Under current Tasmanian law, except for certain limited defects in title, the principle of 'buyer beware' applies in relation to the purchase of residential property.
The new requirements include that vendors provide sellers with third-party documents, such as title documents, plans and a Section 337 council certificate, as well as giving consumers the option to obtain a building inspection report.