REIWA: surcharge will affect more than just foreign buyers

Stock image.
Stock image.

REIWA has renewed its opposition to the foreign buyers duty surcharge, stating it will affect more than just foreign buyers.

President Hayden Groves said the new tax would also impact people with foreign spouses.

“West Australians with foreign spouses who purchase a home together would also be affected by this surcharge, with 50 per cent of the value of the property eligible for the seven per cent tax under the government’s proposed legislation,” he said.

“This policy has been touted as an investor tax, that only targets the big end of town, but that simply is not the case, in fact, land bought to be developed into eight or more dwellings is exempt.”

REIWA has called on all members of WA parliament to oppose the surcharge

Mr Groves said the tax was also poorly timed and would only serve to further stifle the state’s property market, when it was on the cusp of a recovery.

“WA has the lowest level of foreign investment and foreign students of any capital in the country, besides Darwin,” he said.

“The state is also on the verge of a skills shortage and we need foreign families to fill that void.

“This type of misguided policy will dampen the incentive for foreigners who are not permanent residents to locate and live here.

“The WA Government should be implementing policies that attract people to the state, not deterring them with unfair taxes.”

Mr Groves said people that come to WA would be forced into the rental market for the duration of their stay, or until they obtain permanent residency, which would cause an upward pressure on rental prices, which would affect everyone.

The surcharge is proposed to come into effect on January 1, 2019.