Franchise boss calls for second home buyer reform

State governments have been urged to make it easier for retirees to downsize so that more stock is released for upgraders.

Raine & Horne executive chairman Angus Raine said that while the national debate is focused on first home buyers, attention should also be paid to the problems facing second home buyers.

“The trouble is that upgrading to a bigger home is not a simple or straightforward transaction either, especially with more 'empty nesters' in Sydney’s northern and eastern suburbs and Melbourne’s southern and eastern suburbs sitting on larger family homes,” he said.

“Empty nesters are hindering the second home buyer markets in our major capital cities because the costs for them to downsize either to a smaller property or a different location are too prohibitive thanks to excessive stamp duty charges imposed by state governments.”

Mr Raine called on state governments to consider stamp duty tax breaks for homeowners aged over 70 who would like to sell a principal place of residence.

That, in turn, would help address some of the supply constraints that are cramping the real estate plans of second-time buyers in Australia’s capital cities, he added.

“Stamp duty eats into the retirement nest eggs of many older Australians […] because the majority of their working careers was completed prior to the introduction of compulsory superannuation in the early 1990s,” he said.

[Related: Stamp duty increases 695% in past 20 years]

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