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NSW stamp duty reform revives nationwide calls to axe the tax

By Juliet Helmke
16 June 2022 | 11 minute read
Quentin Kilian reb

NSW’s decision to push on with stamp duty reform has renewed industry leaders’ calls for all states to consider overhauling the tax.

NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet’s announcement that the state’s 2022-23 budget will include plans to phase out stamp duty has been met with applause from the real estate industry and spurred industry veterans like Quentin Kilian, chief executive of the Real Estate Industry of Victoria, to renew their pressure on other states to do the same.

The decision by the NSW government to push on with this substantial shift in tax code has meant that it will become a key topic of discussion during the upcoming State and Federal Treasures forum on 22 July.

“We welcome a national discussion on a fundamental overhaul of real estate industry taxation – it is, quite frankly, well overdue,” Mr Kilian said.

Mr Kilian commented that with recent property price highs, the state was making increasingly more money off the property market.

“Each year the Victorian government derives up to $14 billion in revenue from the property sector – nearly half of all taxation revenue raised – but not much has changed in terms of new support of the sector either by investing in more social housing or contributing to other initiatives that help develop a stable and sustainable property market. This has to change,” he said.

And he noted the stymying effect that the tax is believed to have on market participation.

“For too long here in Victoria, our government has been reliant on stamp duty, a tax which is hugely prohibitive for first homebuyers looking to get into the market, not to mention new investors and even downsizers,” Mr Kilian said.

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His comments echoed those of Real Estate Institute of Australia president Hayden Groves, who has been urging the state treasures to take up the issue, calling for them to seriously consider “a universal solution that is fair, equitable and looks at the tax system as a whole”.

Mr Perrottet has acknowledged that federal support will ultimately be required to move forward with his plans.

Industry insiders appear to be hoping that the state’s determination to push forward with the issue could have a domino effect across the country.

“It is time to axe the tax,” Mr Groves said in no uncertain terms.

“Done well, it will contribute to addressing the housing supply problem, allow Australians to move closer to job opportunities and not feel locked in to their current housing option,” he added.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Juliet Helmke

Based in Sydney, Juliet Helmke has a broad range of reporting and editorial experience across the areas of business, technology, entertainment and the arts. She was formerly Senior Editor at The New York Observer.

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