REINSW weighs in on stamp duty

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The Real Estate Institute of New South Wales (REINSW) has joined the debate over the future of stamp duty in Australia, criticising the NSW Government’s stance on the issue.

REINSW president Malcolm Gunning has urged the State Government to rethink its approach to the issue after what it believes were misguided comments from Premier Mike Baird.

According to REINSW, Baird told ABC News on Saturday that “reducing stamp duty at this time will add to the affordability crisis… by giving a stimulus to an already heated market.”

REINSW believes the opposite, claiming changes to the state’s stamp duty arrangements will see house prices fall.

“Abolishing stamp duty for first home buyers on existing properties and reviewing stamp duty rates that have not been touched for 30 years would see more properties enter the market,” Gunning said.

“Lower volumes drive higher property prices, while higher volumes slow the market and improve affordability.

According to REINSW, the NSW Government has collected more than $5 billion in revenue from stamp duty this financial year, but that figure could increase if changes were made to the scheme.

“In Western Australia revenues rose by more than $709 million between 2003 and 2006 when stamp duty was cut by 0.9 per cent,” Gunning said.

“In 2006/07 when the vendor duty was repealed in NSW, the government made almost $1 billion more in revenue and this proves that a reduction in tax improves the market for both the property consumer and government.”

The push from REINSW to see changes to stamp duty comes after the Real Estate Institute of Queensland and the Property Council of Australia made similar statements. 

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