Tax and legal advice
Land, zoning policy

Zoning policies: ‘oppressive’ and ‘unnecessary’

By Sasha Karen

Multiple experts have come out and confirmed a recent discussion paper by the Reserve Bank of Australia: zoning is the cause behind why property values are so high, rather than the value of the property itself.

The discussion paper, The Effects of Zoning on Housing Prices, authored by Ross Kendall and Peter Tulip, explores just how much the value of a house is driven due to zoning restrictions, and not the actual property itself.

“We estimate that the average Sydney house, valued at $1.16 million in 2016, represents a $395,000 structure on a $765,000 block of land,” Mr Kendall and Mr Tulip stated in the paper.

“However, the reason land is expensive is not because it is physically scarce. Hedonic regressions indicate that home owners do not value it, as land, especially highly.

“Specifically, they value land as worth about $400 a square metre on the margin, or $277,000 for the average Sydney block. This ‘marginal’ or ‘physical’ value of land represents the opportunity cost of extra land, as judged by what people are prepared to pay for it.”

If land was taken at its physical value, the authors stated, an average Sydney property could be purchased by an investor at $671,000 – $395,000 for the actual building and $277,000 for the land.

“Instead, buyers… pay $1.16 million. The extra $489,000 reflects administrative restrictions. That is, zoning restrictions raised prices 73 per cent above the cost of supply.”

This percentage varies on the capital city, but the cost of zoning in the major property markets vary from 42 per cent extra in Brisbane, 54 per cent in PerthPerth, TAS Perth, WA and 69 per cent in Melbourne.

Housing Industry Association’s principal economist Tim Reardon, Property Council’s CEO Ken Morrison and Master Builders Australia CEO’s Dentia Wawn all agree with the discussion paper’s sentiments and called on the government to reform the current planning method.

Ms Wawn said prices associated with house construction have been consistent for the last three decades, while house prices “have risen exponentially”.

“The majority of this land cost is a result of government-determined scarcity resulting from zoning restrictions. These restrictions arguably have a more widespread impact on the lives of ordinary Australians than any other regulation,” Ms Wawn said.

Mr Reardon referred to the current zoning policy as “oppressive planning regimes”.

“The myriad of planning restrictions, delays in gaining approval, taxes and charges are at the core of our affordability challenges which have resulted in decades of undersupply of new housing, particularly in metropolitan areas,” Mr Reardon said.

“Restrictions on the adequate release of land for new dwellings and on the type of dwellings that can be built are at the core of this undersupply of housing.

“Planning restrictions have not kept pace with the ongoing high demand for housing.”

Mr Morrison said by not fixing the current zoning policies, the Australian dream is being given up on by younger potential home owners.

“No one is arguing for a planning free for all – cities need proper planning but what the RBA is pointing to is a whole range of unnecessary costs that must be addressed,” Mr Morrison said.

“It’s felt by every family taking on a mortgage $100,000 higher than it needs to be, and by parents and grandparents wondering how on earth their children will ever be able to realise the same property aspiration they did.

“The RBA’s report confirms that the negative effects of poor planning are particularly evident in infill areas where land is limited such as close to the CBD or transport nodes.”

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podcast

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A softening market can be a difficult time for a property investor with finance approval tightening and property capital growth slowing, and while many real estate agents are also feeling the squeeze McGrath Brighton Le Sands' Bill Tsounias claims it is simply the market returning to normal.

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In this episode of the Smart Property Investment Show, Bill joins host Phil Tarrant to share his thoughts on the current Sydney property market, and to share the shifts that he has seen in house and unit sale prices following their worst quarter in the past decade.

Bill will unpack why properties are spending longer on market, share what he believes property investors are doing wrong when trying to sell their properties and share the secrets to getting the best out of a real estate agent and an auction in the current softening market.

If you like this episode, show your support by rating us or leaving a review on iTunes (The Smart Property Investment Show) and by following Smart Property Investment on social media: FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

If you have any questions about what you heard today, any topics of interest you have in mind, or if you’d like to lend your voice to the show, email [email protected] for more insights!

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Revesby
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Strathfield

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Gavin Kemp and his now-fiancé bought their first property together after only six months of dating. They weren’t even living together at the time. Now, two years on, the pair have bought five properties, sold two and have a solid plan in place for their ongoing property journey. 

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In this episode of the Smart Property Investment Show, Gavin joins host Phil Tarrant to discuss how he chose the locations where he decided to invest and how, due to the initial lack of education (something that he now values highly), he lost money on his first two investments.

Gavin will share his thoughts on the current property market, reveal the people who he has leaned on throughout his property journey and discuss why his strategy employs a zero procrastination rule.

If you like this episode, show your support by rating us or leaving a review on iTunes (The Smart Property Investment Show) and by following Smart Property Investment on social media: FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

If you have any questions about what you heard today, any topics of interest you have in mind, or if you’d like to lend your voice to the show, email [email protected] for more insights!

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A joint property portfolio before they were even living together
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As the investment market tightens are you looking to learn something that will help you realign or readjust your property goals? In this episode of The Smart Property Investment Show, first time on the podcast Lisa Porter joins host Phil Tarrant to talk about the gems and wisdom associated with her modest portfolio of ‘only’ six properties.

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Listen now as Lisa and host Phil Tarrant discuss how her property journey started in the UK, with the purchase of a rough unit in a lower-socio suburb of South London. Lisa breaks down how that first purchase provided her greatest lesson, one she still applies today - turn off the noise, don’t worry too much about the peripheries and just get on with it.

The pair also discuss how property has given Lisa so much extra value in her life, not just building an asset base and heaps of enjoyment, but it also how it changed the trajectory of her career. Women, she says, shouldn’t be fearful of being proactive and taking control of the direction of their family’s financial future.  

 

If you like this episode, show your support by rating us or leaving a review on iTunes (The Smart Property Investment Show) and by following Smart Property Investment on social media: FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

If you have any questions about what you heard today, any topics of interest you have in mind, or if you’d like to lend your voice to the show, email [email protected] for more insights!

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Walking and talking property investment with Lisa Porter – therapy, empowerment, education and inspiration

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