State election campaigning is in full swing but what items should the political parties be looking at? In my opinion stamp duty needs immediate attention. Western Australia has one of the highest stamp duty rates in the country. People ask me all the time what do I get when I pay stamp duty? The answer is you get nothing other than paying another tax. Stamp duty reduces the amount people can spend on buying, limits the amount of sales and reduces how much they can save as a deposit. Did you know that stamp a duty on the median price in Albany is $13,965? And remember you have settlement costs and transfer fees on top of that.

 

I’d also like to see no stamp duty on people over 55 in regional WA that sell their principal place of residence and purchase another principal place of residence in regional WA within 12 months. What this does is unlock the equity in property meaning that over 55’s have the ability to be able to spend in local communities that then has a knock on effect for business. And why not reward the elderly that have worked hard and pay their taxes for our country.

 

Then there is first home buyers. Great that there is a 15k grant to buy a block and land and build in 2017 but what about the buyers that want already established? Did you know that before the established home owners grant was abolished that over 70% of first home buyers bought an established property. Let’s bring back the grant and make it a decent amount.

 

What all the above does is create action and movement in the marketplace. That lends to more activity in other sectors such as marketing and advertising, signage, timberpest and building inspectors, banking, insurance etc. and is good for the 209,000 plus small businesses in WA.

 

So if political parties really want to get serious, stop the garbage talk and fake promises and let’s action the items above to make real progress.