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On Tuesday 11 May 2021, Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg handed down the 2021-22 Federal Budget, which revealed that Australia’s economy is forecast to grow by 4.25 per cent in 2021-22.
While the 2021-22 budget contained a range of positive measures for first home buyers and single parent families, REIWA believes more could have been done to assist the real estate sector more broadly.
Standing out above all else, the major spending required to address housing affordability and supply in WA was nowhere to be found.
The focus of the Federal Government appears to be assisting vulnerable buyers by giving them greater access to the market. While REIWA supports these measures, more needs to be done to address the state's housing shortage.
Housing infrastructure spending
Housing supply in WA remains low and investor activity is stagnant. Many experts believe the Federal Government has an important role to play, particularly in the public and affordable housing space.
Disappointingly, the Federal Government has earmarked only $124 million across the states and territories to either boost public housing stock or fund homelessness services.
While REIWA supports any spending at all on social housing, much more is needed to address the affordable housing shortages in our state.
First home buyers
REIWA was pleased to see the extension of successful schemes assisting first home buyers, and supports any scheme that will reduce the barriers faced by first home buyers entering the market:
REIWA was also pleased to see the introduction of a new scheme for single parents, addressing a critical need in assisting single parents to enter the housing market:
With only 10,000 places allocated for this scheme over four years, spots will be limited, and REIWA expects it will become increasingly popular as more single parents become aware of the scheme.
Tax policies directly impact the level of investment in housing which in turn influences housing affordability.
Regrettably, none of the tax measures in this budget will have enough of an impact to see positive outcomes.
REIWA was happy to see an extension for another year of the Lower-Middle Income Tax Offset, which has been a popular tax break for people earning up to $125,000 per annum.
REIWA would have liked to have seen the Stage 3 Personal Income Tax cuts bought forward, to have more money in the pockets of the everyday Australian.
The Federal Government has announced an extension to the Downsizer Scheme, which allows downsizers to turbocharge their super (up to $300,000) when they sell their family home.
Before, only those aged 65 and over were able to access the scheme. Now, anyone aged 60 and over can access the scheme, and the work test is no longer required (meaning you don't need to prove you worked before accessing the concessions).
REIWA welcomes the changes made in the superannuation space. The Institute has consistently called for greater access to existing family homes as critical for young families seeking to upsize.
REIWA also maintains that meaningful changes to stamp duty would see even more movement in this space and will continue to advocate to State and Federal Governments to reform or abolish stamp duty.
To find out what the Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA) had to say about the 2021-22 Federal Budget, view their official media release.
Alternatively, if you wish to find out more about REIWA’s advocacy efforts, visit the advocacy page.