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89 per cent of property experts want land tax not stamp duty

This month’s Finder RBA Cash Rate Survey shows an overwhelming preference for an annual land tax rather than “the one-off financial sledgehammer of stamp duty” on property purchases.

Earlier this month, the NSW Government proposed a “once in a generation change of giving home buyers the choice to pay either stamp duty or a new smaller annual property tax”.

Eighty-nine per cent of experts who weighed in on this particular issue (24 of 27) were in favour of scrapping stamp duty nationally and replacing it with the annual land tax proposed by the NSW Government.

“Buying a home in Australia is already an expensive affair and stamp duty makes it more so,” Finder insights manager, Graham Cooke said.

“It effectively raises the bottom rung of the housing ladder, burdens buyers with a huge up-front tax and inhibits the flow of property sales.

“In an ideal market, you buy when you can afford to and you sell when you want to. Stamp duty forces first-time buyers to save up for longer, and prevents current owners from upselling.

“Axing the tax now also means buyers who are currently saving can get more bang for their buck,” Mr Cooke said.

In Finder’s June survey, two-thirds of respondents predicted the end of stamp duty by 2021.

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