parliament house perth
REIWA President says it is not too late for the State Government to tackle housing supply issues. Image – Canva
  • REIWA President disappointed housing supply issues were not an election priority
  • Reiterates reforms, primarily stamp duty
  • REIWA hopes to continue to work closely with the State Government

Damian Collins, President of REIWA, has congratulated Mark McGowan and the Australian Labor Party on their resounding victory but has called for the re-elected government to do more to address housing issues in the State.

According to the ABC, the ALP is predicted to win 52 lower house seats with the Liberals just 3 and Nationals 4 – meaning, amazingly, the Liberals are no longer the opposition party nor have official party status.

Mr Collins said he was disappointed that housing was not a priority issue during the ALP’s campaign, especially during a time where there are significant supply issues in both the sales and rentals sectors.

Without long-term policy initiatives, Mr Collins fears problems in the sector will worsen.

 “While the building grants during the pandemic did help to create additional supply, we are disappointed that there were no commitments, other than a limited amount of additional public housing, from the WA Labor Party to help tackle these problems, particularly given the state’s enviable budget surplus position,”

“Now is the time for bold reform to help more West Australians access housing. Critically, we need to address the rental shortage and help encourage investors back into the market to free up housing for tenants.” 

Damian Collins, REIWA President

In the lead up to the election, REIWA made multiple recommendations.

The first, and most notable of these, was to significantly reform stamp duty in Western Australia.

Similar to the proposal being explored in New South Wales, the reform would allow homeowners to opt for an ongoing annual payment in place of the lump sum.

According to a survey of over 1000 West Australians conducted by REIWA,  60% of respondents said they would opt for the ongoing payment if given the choice.

The reform also has broader support with developer  Gary Dempsey telling The Property Tribune he supports the idea.

Mr Collins believes this reform alone could address housing affordability concerns.

“Stamp duty is a key area of concern for WA buyers and there is clearly a desire for this inefficient tax to be reformed. Other states, like NSW, are taking these steps so there is no reason why WA shouldn’t also be looking at alternative methods of revenue collection to help ease the financial burden on buyers and make housing more affordable.”

Damian Collins, REIWA President

Summarising the election result, Mr Collins said it was not too late to address the housing supply issue, adding that REIWA would cooperate closely with the State Government.

“We hope to work closely with the McGowan Government in the coming years to tackle these issues so we can help achieve a fair and prosperous property market for all West Australians,” concluded Mr Collins.

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