Seniors benefit from lower duty
There has been a lot of discussion about reductions in stamp duty being offered to first home buyers after 1 July, and the improved and increased assistance for seniors is equally significant.
The REIV has highlighted that one of the problems with stamp duty is that it acts as an artificial barrier to moving; after all, if you need to move home because you have outgrown your current home – or it has outgrown you – then you face an additional expense of around $30,000 on a median priced home.
This issue was also highlighted by many submissions to the federal government’s Henry Tax Review.
It can be a particular barrier for those who have retired and are on fixed incomes as they have both a limited and finite income. And if you have retired and your family has grown up and moved out then it is more than likely that your home is larger than you need or want.
There are, therefore, very obvious benefits for the individuals and community to removing artificial barriers to ‘downsizing’.
This is why the decision to substantially increase the value of the duty relief for eligible seniors is a good one.
As of 1 July the current threshold for duty relief will increase from $440,000 to $750,000. Under the new laws, eligible seniors will receive a total exemption from stamp duty for homes purchased to a value of $330,000 and a partial exemption between $330,000 and $750,000.
The home can be a new one or an existing one, the main stipulation is that it must be the purchaser’s principal place of residence.
The list of eligible seniors has also been extended to include holders of a Commonwealth Seniors Card.
To see the full list of edibility requirements and how to apply contact the State Revenue Office on 13 21 61.