Lobby groups join forces against "unfair" negative gearing

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A national alliance of community housing and welfare groups is campaigning the government to abolish “unfair” negative gearing and put housing affordability at the centre of this federal election.

The alliance – made up of Homelessness Australia (HA), National Shelter, the Community Housing Industry Association (CHIA) and the Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) – has created a petition calling for tax reforms that “put ordinary people ahead of the interests of investors”.

“Australia is in the midst of a housing crisis and current tax policy has fuelled Australian housing prices to record and unaffordable levels,” ACOSS CEO Dr Cassandra Goldie said.

“Tax settings that encourage speculative investment and inflate house prices – like negative gearing and the capital gains tax discount – must be addressed in a new national strategy to address housing affordability.”

She said these “unfair tax concessions” cost the federal budget more than $7 billion every year with over half of these tax breaks going to investors in the top 10% of income earners. 

The petition is arguing that the savings from binning negative gearing could be redirected to improve affordability, including a tax rebate for new affordable housing, and significantly increased investment in public and community housing.

“ACOSS stands with the community in insisting that governments do all that they can to ensure everyone pays their fair share of tax to enable us to fund our services properly into the future and to help end the housing crisis that is pushing people into financial hardship,” Dr Goldie said.

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  • Debbie says on 03/06/2016 10:22:51 AM

    We are not big investors but took a risk and bought an investment property to try and generate income for our older years. This was bought using the money in our own home ( 20 years hard work) as security. The first year nearly broke us financially and is not as easy as it seems. The investment is now worth $50,000 less than we paid for it, the rent almost $320 less per month and if we had to cover the shire rates, water rates, insurance, management fees, repairs etc etc we would be financially bankrupt because we would have to sell everything and start again. The government has encouraged this and yet it's the working class suffering AGAIN. The housing market would go bust if negative gearing was abolished because it's what the market is built on. The market would be flooded and yes it would bring prices down but spending power of hundreds of thousands of people would reduce dramatically. The building of new houses would cease as demand reduced, rendering plumbers, brickies, joiners, gardiners, home sellers, designers and many others jobless. This would then have a knock on effect reducing the need for heavy machine operators, truck drivers, building supplies etc etc. it would be a catastrophe to the economy and thousands of hard working Australians who took a chance.

  • Bill says on 03/06/2016 03:24:23 PM

    What a fantastic idea! If they abolish that, I'll be able to charge more in rent! Great for me! Rents will skyrocket, as investors charge more to make up their losses! Not so good for low income earners though... wonder why this lobby group hates them so much?

  • Cmac says on 03/06/2016 04:39:36 PM

    Not sure this is a valid argument, people saying wealthy people are getting a subsidy when they are the exact people who subsidise the whole tax system (top 10% of tax payers pay over 60% of the entire tax revenue) we might want to always take from the wealthy but if it were not for them we would all be paying alot more tax. I think goverment should just play with the numbers eg reduce the CGT benefit and only allow investors to be able to claim up 37c in the dollar not the 47c the very wealthy investors can (a small portion) This would mean the average income person can still invest in property and rents should not be driven up.

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