Calls for PM to scrap “inefficient” stamp duty tax

The housing affordability debate continues with calls for Prime Minister Tony Abbott to scrap what has been described by the Property Council of Australia as the country’s “worst and most inefficient tax” - stamp duty.

New figures by the Council reveal that average stamp duty costs have increased by up to 800% in the past 20 years -a result that its Chief Executive Ken Morrison has called “scandalous” according to

“Taxes are supposed to lean lightly on the economy, not act as a barrier to economic activity, job creation and prosperity, but that is exactly what stamp duty does,” he said.

According to the recent Fairfax-Ipsos poll only 29% of capital city residents believe housing is affordable for first home buyers. This figure is especially low in Sydney at just 15%.

Research commissioned by the Council shows the cost of stamp duty over the life of an average mortgage is highest in Sydney at $61,542, followed closely by Melbourne at $56, 616. Then by Darwin ($49, 701), Canberra ($35, 427), Perth ($33, 654), Adelaide ($30, 393), Hobart ($21, 564) and Brisbane ($14, 733).

The housing affordability crisis has impacted political ratings with a recent poll revealing that Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has surpassed Prime Minister Abbott as the preferred PM by a single point to 42%.

It follows a series of blunderous comments on housing affordability made by the Prime Minister and Treasurer Joe Hockey who said last week that Australian home buyers wanting to buy their home should “get a good job that pays good money.”