Change NSW first homebuyer qualifiers
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Did you know that the only way to qualify for a 'first homebuyers' tax exemption and subsequent grant is if you are purchasing a home brand new? On the surface, it sounds like if you've never owned property you'd be up for a stamp duty tax exemption (or reduction depending on the price of the property) as well as a government grant to assist you in your purchase. This, however, is not the case. Since January 2012, to be eligible for the exemption and grant you have to be purchasing a brand new, shiny house. If you're like the majority of first homebuyers, purchasing a new home is often unrealistic and out of the question.
It is clear that many parts of NSW are experiencing a housing crisis. There seems to be a lack of action from the government to actually do something about it and make it easier for those of us trying to get into the market. Either it's not a top priority or they aren't really sure how to tackle it.
It seems that for many of us, our only option is to purchase a house an hour or more's drive out from the CBD if we wish to ever pay off our mortgage- that is if you can manage the average 4-8 years it takes singles and couples respectively to save up a deposit. Take into account the cost of rent and saving for a house seems near impossible.
Stamp duty is a tax that must be paid to the government when land or property is transferred. Why is it then, that first homebuyers are being forced to pay this tax when they have no property to transfer, to begin with. It is only contributing to the housing crisis as more and more people are forced to save more money to buy a house that is already built because they simply can't afford, or it isn't practical for them to build a new house on a vacant block of land.
The first homebuyers grant should be given to all first homebuyers, not just those who can afford a new home. Likewise, the stamp duty tax exemption should only apply to those transferring land or property. I am asking for the NSW government to reconsider what their definition of 'first homebuyer' is and why it doesn't include all first homebuyers. They need to re-evaluate why they have cut so many who could benefit from this scheme, out of it. We need an overhaul to our housing system in Sydney and a break for those struggling to even get into the market in the first place.
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