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REINSW urges NSW Government to reinstate first homebuyers incentives

The Real Estate Institute of New South Wales is calling on the NSW Treasurer to reinstate first home buyers incentives for purchasers of existing properties in the 2013 Budget, due to be released on 18 June 2013.

“We are calling on the Treasurer to not only reinstate first home buyer incentives that were removed in 2012, but to also explore additional opportunities to assist first home buyers to take their first step onto the property ladder,” REINSW President Christian Payne said.

“It is not too late for the NSW Government to reverse its decision to abolish from 1 January 2012, the stamp duty exemption/concesion and from 1 October 2012, the $7000 grant, for those buying existing properties.

“The new grant of $15,000 (which will drop to $10,000 from 1 January 2014) for first home buyers who purchase or build a new home for not more than $650,000 that was introduced on 1 October 2012, has clearly failed. First home buyers are sitting on their hands.

“This can be seen in data released last week from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (16 April), which shows the number of first home buyer commitments as a percentage of total owner occupied housing finance commitments fell to 14.4 per cent in February 2013 from 15.0 per cent in January 2013.

“In fact, they have fallen from 19.4 per cent in September 2012 and all time highs of 29.5 per cent in May 2009. At this rate, we are heading towards lows of 12.5 per cent seen in March 2004.

“The government has failed NSW first home buyers, as well as those who are ready to move to the next step on the property ladder.

“In removing the incentives on existing properties, the NSW government has forgotten the important place first home buyers hold in the property ladder and the huge benefits of their activities across the state.

“We also run the real risk of losing the brightest minds who, if not treated with the respect they deserve, will take their skills and savings to other more affordable states. We cannot let this happen.

“The NSW Treasurer must act now to restore balance to the property market and we will continue to lobby the government until the situation is rectified,” Mr Payne said

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