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The Victorian government’s provision of tax relief for people directly impacted by bushfires has been welcomed by the Housing Industry Association.
Businesses, families and individuals whose properties have been destroyed or substantially damaged by bushfires are set to receive ex-gratia relief for their 2020 land tax assessment, according to the state government.
Land tax will also be waived on eligible properties that are being used to provide free accommodation for people in need.
The government has also outlined that it will provide up to $55,000 in stamp duty relief for anyone who does not choose to rebuild in their local community and is considering a move elsewhere.
Fiona Nield, the Housing Industry Association’s Victorian executive director, said the group “fully supports the Victorian government getting behind those who have been displaced in this bushfire emergency”.
She said taxes such as stamp duty and land tax “are a major impediment to people buying or building a home, and by significantly reducing these fees, people will hopefully be able to return to a new house sooner and get their lives back on track with as little angst as is possible”.
“When you have to pick up and start again, the prospect can be made even more daunting by the costs and taxes you don’t think about,” the executive director commented.
The Housing Industry Association stated that it has already connected with Bushfire Recovery Victoria, with the group also looking forward to working closely with the state government over the coming weeks and months.
For Ms Nield, “At this time of great hardship for those affected, it’s the small things that alleviate financial suffering that count the most.”
“This move will go some ways in alleviating some unnecessary worries.”
Land tax, also known as property tax, is the fee paid on the purchase of a property owned by an individual or other legal entity.
Land tax is a state tax calculated and paid for the ownership of land or properties.
Stamp duty is a tax imposed on the purchase of a property based on its price, location, and loan purpose.