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Stamp duty debate heats up

By webmaster 30 September 2011 | 1 minute read

State-based property stamp duty has come under fire yet again as new research has found housing is the second largest contributor of tax to Australian governments.

The Centre for International Economics (CIE) Taxation of the Housing Sector report found taxes applied to new housing account for around 1.2 per cent of 'value add' to the economy, but make up 2.8 per cent of government taxation revenues.

Laing+Simmons general manager Leanne Pilkington said the CIE report has reinforced recent claims that stamp duty and other taxes are putting home ownership out of reach for many Australians.

“Stamp duty is the single greatest hurdle to affordability and as this latest research identifies, [it] is highly inefficient,” Ms Pilkington said.

“This unfair tax is preventing the residential market and the economy as a whole from benefiting from a range of positive impacts and its abolition cannot come soon enough.”

Late last week, Real Estate Institute of Australia acting president Pamela Bennet labelled state-based stamp duties as inequitable, inefficient and an unstable source of revenue for state governments.

These comments were largely echoed by Ms Pilkington.

“For years governments have been lining their pockets at the expense of the housing market, and home buyers especially, to create the situation we have today,” she said

“Affordability is at crisis point and the undersupply of housing cannot possibly meet the market’s needs.”

The research was commissioned by the Housing Industry Association ahead of next week’s federal government tax forum.

Stamp duty debate heats up
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