REIWA Welcomes New Labor Government

The New Western Australian Government must tackle housing affordability, says Hayden Groves, president of the REIWA.

Hayden Groves, president of the REIWA, says he is looking forward to working with the new Labor government and that the institute will work with the Western Australian Labor Party on the various housing issues that affect Western Australians.

Groves said the new government must look at new ways to address housing affordability, and stimulate activity in a soft market.

“Labor needs to look at the barrier that state property taxes, like transfer duty and land tax aggregation rules, have on the buying and investing decisions of the WA public,” said Groves, adding the government must find “more sustainable state revenue sources”.

Despite record low interest rates and a soft housing market in Western Australia, the recent Housing Affordability Report by the Adelaide Bank and Real Estate Institute of Australia found affordability declined in the state during the December quarter by 0.5 percentage points to 23.3 per cent.

In addition, said Groves, “we recently surveyed WA property seekers about the impact state property taxes have on their lives, and 90 per cent of respondents said these taxes were a barrier to them owning or investing in property.”

In the lead up to the election, the REIWA campaigned for four key policy reforms:

  • No increases in state property taxes.
  • Abolish land tax aggregation rules.
  • Transfer duty exemption for ‘right sizing’.
  • Transfer duty concession for off-the-plan transactions.

The REIWA argued that implementing the above policies, rather that delivering a hit to state coffers, would “have a positive impact on the state budget” because of increased transaction numbers.

Article by: The Real Estate Conversation

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