Government addiction to property taxes hits almost $50 billion

New ABS data released today reveals that Australian governments collected an additional $4.3 billion in property taxes last year with direct property taxes hitting a new peak of $49.5 billion.

“Governments are collecting $950 million every week from property and it’s getting worse with property taxes up 9.6 per cent in 2015/16.  Overall, property taxes are up a massive 48% in just five years.”, said Ken Morrison, Chief Executive of the Property Council of Australia.

“Bit by bit, increase by increase, state and local governments are squeezing home owners and Australian businesses.

“The epicentre of this gouging is NSW followed by Victoria.  Property revenues in NSW increased by 16 per cent in 2015-16 and 11.1 per cent in Victoria.  This is not a one-off increase either – NSW property taxes are up 65 per cent over five years and 50 per cent in Victoria.

“The two biggest states are now collecting over $30 billion in property taxes a year.

“During a time when we need to make it easier to buy a home, state and local governments are continuing to gain from extraordinary increases in property taxes.

Mr Morrison said the big driver of growth was stamp duties on conveyances which saw an 11.9 per cent increase nationwide raising $20.6 billion.

“Stamp duty on conveyances increased by 18.6 per cent in Victoria to $6 billion, 13.3 per cent in NSW to $8.4 billion and 11.4 per cent in Queensland to $3 billion.

“Local government across Australia is also gaining revenues over the inflation rate with municipal rates by 5.5 per cent nationwide to $16.9 billion.

“If we are serious about housing affordability, we must start be getting serious about property taxes.”

Media contact: Paul Ritchie | E [email protected]