Stamp Duty – How Much Is Your State Charging You?

Stamp Duty – How Much Is Your State Charging You?




Stamp duty costs, which are paid on both the buy and the mortgage amount, are soaring according to the second Residential Stamp Duty Report from home loan lender Bankwest.

The report discloses that over the last five years these levels have increased by 36 per cent in Australia and Victorians are being hit the hardest.

Residential stamp duty for buying the typical Australian house is now $14,761.

BankWest senior analyst Tim Crawford told the ABC: “Across Victoria as a whole, we’ve seen a 38 per cent increase in the typical stamp duty bill over five years and the typical bill in Victoria is pushing towards $20,000.” he said.

“In Melbourne we’ve seen a 76 per cent increase in the median stamp duty bill over five years.”

This translates as Melbourne home buyers having to set aside four and a half months worth of their average household income to pay this tax on a median priced house.

The new Liberal Government in Victoria campaigned on this issue and is currently preparing to cut this tax for first home buyers. Thereby reducing it by around 50 per cent on a median priced house in Melbourne.

Melbourne buyers are the hardest hit of any Australian capital city with the average bill pushing by $30,000 to $30,620.

This is four times the burden of median houses in Brisbane, which enjoys the nation’s smallest bill of $7,245.

Triggering this increase is the booming Australian character market, which has delivered however another blow to character buyers who now have to work an average of two months just to pay this cost, according to the Bankwest research.

Crawford says “bracket crawl” is generally to blame for the increases. He explains that house prices have continued to increase but most state and territory governments haven’t changed their corresponding thresholds.

Bankwest Retail Chief Executive, Vittoria Shortt said the consistent rise was an ever-escalating burden for home buyers.

“There’s little doubt that stamp duty is among the most unpopular duties a home owner encounters and our research shows they are a meaningful financial add on to the cost of a character,” Shortt said.

“Most homeowners in capital cities now need to set aside or borrow three months of their household income if they want to move house.

“As a consequence, many people may be tempted to stay put and renovate instead of move house because of high stamp duty bills.

“All states offer stamp duty concessions for first time buyers and there have been concessions for new home buyers which also helps. But people already in the character market who are looking to upgrade in their area generally confront higher bills.”

On a national average, stamp duty payable on the median house is equivalent to 3.3 per cent of the buy price with Melbourne leading the way at 5.2 per cent of the buy price for the median house and lowest is Brisbane at 1.6 per cent.

Breakdown by State: (as at September 2010)

MEDIAN STAMP DUTY BILL: NSW – $16,865 VIC – $19,690 QLD – $5,985 SA – $14,630 WA – $15,889 TAS – $9,730 ACT – $22,685 NT – $19,430 AUSTRALIA – $14,761

1 YR % CHANGE: NSW – 5%, VIC – 16%, QLD – 0%, SA – 5%, WA – 0%, TAS – 1%, ACT – 15%, NT – 14%, AUSTRALIA – 8%

3 YR % CHANGE: NSW – 14%, VIC – 27%, QLD – 5%, SA – 9%, WA – (-8)%, TAS – 10%, ACT – 22%, NT – 47%, AUSTRALIA – 14%

5 YR % CHANGE: NSW – 20%, VIC – 38%, QLD – 80%, SA – 57%, WA – 30%, TAS – 42%, ACT – 82%, NT – 152%, AUSTRALIA – 36%

STAMP DUTY AS % OF buy PRICE: NSW – 3.6%, VIC – 4.3%, QLD – 1.4%, SA – 4.0%, WA – 3.5%, TAS – 3.2%, ACT – 4.2%, NT – 4.0%, AUSTRALIA – 3.3%

MEDIAN HOUSE PRICE: NSW – $475,000, VIC – $462,000, QLD – $421,000, SA – $366,000, WA – $460,500, TAS – $304,500, ACT – $538,000, NT – 487,500, AUSTRALIA – $441,500

meaningful findings

  • Melbourne home owners need to set aside 4.4 months of their annual household income to pay stamp duty for median priced similarities, the highest in the nation. Sydney ranks second, at 3.2 months.
  • Brisbane home buyers pay the lowest in this tax, having to set aside one month’s salary.
  • The typical home owner in more than half of capital city local government areas (53%) needs to set aside 25% of their annual household income – up from 47% a year ago.
  • Nationally, the typical home owner in 17% of council areas now needs 25% of their household income to pay the charge – up slightly from 16% five years ago.
  • There has been a rise by more than 50% in five capital cities in the past five years – Darwin (137%), Canberra (82%), Brisbane (77%), Melbourne (76%) and Adelaide (60%).
  • Western Australia and Victoria are the only states to have raised their thresholds to match the rise in house prices in the past five years.
  • Queensland has the lowest stamp duty bills as a percentage of median buy price at 1.4%, whilst Victoria has the highest as a proportion of the median price at 4.3%.



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