Hello Cruel World
Tuesday, April 06, 2004
{Today's New South Wales State "mini-budget", brought down by NSW Treasurer, Michael Egan. Don't have full details, only what I've heard people saying. My off-the-top comments on some prominent issues.}

First: Developers keep complaining when they have to pay levies & claim that "all the burden" of helping to provide not just for infrastructure that people using their developments will need over the next century or two, but maintaining existing infrastructure, is on them, & therefore on their buyers. (Strangely, despite this, Meriton's head, Mr Triguboff, just got onto the Forbes Rich List this year.).
I always considered Stamp Duty the way of getting this extra infrastructure funding (needed beyond the bare subsistence funds raised through council rates for basic needs) from users of the infrastructure beyond the first owner, paid at the time you 'crystallized' the asset of your house. It is surely more sensible for the vendor making the profit to pay that tax directly rather than the buyer, but I suppose under the old way it did indirectly.

Second: So many times over so many years we've heard that the Australian tax system is skewed badly in a way that encourages people to invest in real estate instead of supporting businesses, research or all the other possible investment opportunities.
This not only means many projects or businesses may either fail or have to sell out overseas for lack of local funds, but that the market in real estate is not really reflecting housing needs.
Surely this rearrangement should help balance the tax burden more evenly, taxing investment real estate more than owner-occupied, so that non-real estate investments become more attractive.
[The disastrous tale of Japanese real estate should put paid to the 'they're not making any more' and 'you can't lose' myths.]
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 / . Lives in Australia/New South Wales/Sydney, speaks English. Eye color is hazel. I am what my mother calls unique. My interests are photography, reading, natural history/land use, town planning, sustainability.

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Australia, New South Wales, Sydney, English, photography, reading, natural history, land use, town planning, sustainability.