09/10/2019 - 15:15

REIWA outlines industry recovery plan

09/10/2019 - 15:15

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The Real Estate Institute of Western Australia has renewed its push to increase the stamp duty exemption threshold for first homebuyers, as part of a six-point plan it unveiled to help breathe new life into the state’s weak residential construction and property markets.

Damian Collins says the WA property market is an integral part of the state's economy.

The Real Estate Institute of Western Australia has renewed its push to increase the stamp duty exemption threshold for first homebuyers, as part of a six-point plan it unveiled to help breathe new life into the state’s weak residential construction and property markets.

REIWA said the dramatic decline in sales activity from 89,000 in 2005 to less than 39,000 in 2018 is a clear sign that the property industry needs a stimulus to attract buyers and investors back into the market.

The first point of its plan is to increase the stamp duty exempt threshold for first homebuyers to $550,000.

“With first homebuyers accounting for a third of all residential property transactions in WA, the stamp duty exception limit should be increased from $430,000 to $550,000, this will open up 49 per cent of properties in the Perth central sub region,” REIWA said.

Additionally, REIWA recommends reintroducing the $7,000 First Homeowners Grant for the purchase of existing dwellings.

“In 2018, the number of first homebuyers reached its lowest levels since 2011, with 8,511 purchasing established properties and 6,246 purchased new homes,” REIWA said.

It is also calling on the state government to introduce a $10,000 concession on stamp duty for seniors over the age of 65 to encourage appropriate ‘right-sizing’.

The final three points of the plan comprise the removal of the stamp duty penalty for off-the-plan purchases, revoking the foreign owner duty surcharge, and the state government undertaking a state tax review.

REIWA president Damian Collins said the Western Australian property market was an integral part of the state's economy, which provides housing and a regular source of income for the state.

“REIWA’s six-point plan outlines recommendations that we believe will help boost the economy and enable more people to enter the property market,” he said.

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