New figures released today show Western Australia’s housing market is still leading the nation.
Treasurer Eric Ripper said Australian Bureau of Statistics data revealed housing finance commitments in WA rose by 5.4 per cent in November - the biggest increase of all States.
In the three months to November 2004, commitments in WA rose by 7.2 per cent - the strongest three-monthly growth of all States and outstripping national growth of just 2.1 per cent.
Mr Ripper said the figures showed the Government’s stamp duty relief for homebuyers - and especially first homebuyers - was working.
He said first homebuyer finance commitments in the three months to November 2004 were 25.5 per cent higher than in the three months to November 2003. This was the strongest increase of all States.
“Last year, the Government announced $1.5billion in tax relief for WA families and businesses,” the Treasurer said.
“Clearly, this has given Western Australians renewed confidence to take the plunge into the housing market.
“WA now has among the most generous stamp duty concessions for first homebuyers in Australia.”
Measures last year included a 15 per cent cut to stamp duty on all property conveyances and the abolition of stamp duty for most first homebuyers.
Land taxpayers will receive a $150 reduction in their land tax bill, through an adjustment to the land tax regime costing $83million over four years and benefiting about 120,000 property investors.
Mr Ripper said the Government could afford the tax relief because of good financial and economic management.
“The Liberals delivered five Budget deficits, presided over a shrinking economy, put up taxes five times and jeopardised the AAA credit rating,” he said.
“Labor has increased spending on health, education and police, delivered four balanced Budgets and invested any financial windfalls in tax relief, long-term infrastructure projects and debt repayment.”
Treasurer's office: 9222 8788