With less than 100 days to go until Victoria’s state election, the Housing Industry Association has called for the next government to reduce the tax burden on housing.

HIA argues that state property-based taxes impose a significant financial burden on Victorian homebuyers with:

  • Victorians paying the highest rate of stamp duty in Australia,
  • Melbourne homebuyers paying up to 38% of a new house and land package in taxes, fees and charges
  • Development contributions collectively amounting to between $37,000 and $77,000 per dwelling in Victoria

Property, housing and development taxes currently contribute more than 50% of Victoria’s revenue. However, HIA believes they also lock out thousands of Victorians from their homeownership dreams each year, so reform is urgently needed to better support housing supply and affordability.

As such, HIA wants the incoming government to do four things:

  1. Undertake a full review of state property-based taxes to see which can be reformed to support housing supply and affordability
  2. Introduce a cap on the percentage of government infrastructure taxes that can be sought under any infrastructure contributions scheme
  3. Commit to a process of reforming stamp duty, including removing any multiple charging of stamp duty for new house and land packages
  4. Repeal the Windfall Gains Tax

Freya Southwell is a property lawyer and principal of Sutton Laurence King Lawyers.

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