Source: The Australian. By Brad Norington, Associate Editor. June 1, 2017
Ms Berejiklian said the government would abolish stamp duty for all first home buyers on new and existing homes priced up to $650,000, and provide stamp duty discounts for homes priced up to $800,000.
Her government will also abolish the duty charged on lenders’ mortgage insurance, providing a saving of about $2900 for a $800,000 home.
A first homeowners’ grant of $10,000 will be available to builders of new properties worth up to $750,000, and to buyers of new properties worth up to $600,000.
The measures — which will take effect from July 1 — are based on government recognition that first home buyers face special difficulties attempting to enter the property market, especially in Sydney, because of rising prices, higher deposits required by banks and competition from foreign and local investors.
As part of the package, the government will double the foreign investor surcharge from 4 per cent to 8 per cent on stamp duty, and raise the land tax surcharge for foreign investors from 0.75 per cent to 2 per cent.
Ms Berejiklian said increased charges for foreign investors were not intended as a disincentive for overseas investment and were unlikely to have much impact because foreign investors did not appear to be “price sensitive”.
She said the higher foreign investor charges were introduced to help fund the $1.2 billion spending package by contributing $900 million in additional revenue over four years.
“This, today, for new homebuyers is a great day,” the NSW Premier said. “It means that the NSW government has not only taken seriously the task of addressing housing affordability, but we’ve acted on it.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Planning Minister Anthony Roberts make the housing affordability announcement today. Picture: John Appleyard
“We know there is not a single solution, we know this is a complex challenge, we know how hard it is — all of us know how hard it is to save up for your first home, especially in greater Sydney and some regional areas where prices have increased substantially in the last few years.”
Ms Berejiklian said that her priority to improve housing affordability across the state by putting downward pressure on prices was to boost supply.
But the current state of static wage growth and difficulty for first home buyers entering the market had prompted her government to introduce measures affecting demand.
She believed the government’s concessions “struck the right balance” and would not be inflationary.
In an attempt to shift more focus to home ownership, the government will remove stamp duty concessions for investors buying property off a plan.
Other measures to help first homebuyers and supply include the fast-tracking of building approvals, and greater use of independent local council panels in the planning process.
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