The property takeaways from the 2019 ACT Budget

June 28th, 2019


The 2019 ACT Budget was delivered earlier this month and came with a few shake ups for property in Canberra. The whole document was 447 pages long, so what do you need to know if you own or are buying property this year?


Stamp duty


If you delay purchasing property until after July 1, you’ll be able to save on the cost of stamp duty. Under new legislation, stamp duty payable on a house worth $750,000 will now be $1,300 less and first home buyers with a household income of less than $160,000 won’t pay stamp duty at all, regardless of whether they are buying a newly built or established home.


This is the halfway point of a 20-year ACT Government program to abolish stamp duty. When the reform first started, stamp duty made up 20% of total ACT tax revenue and today, it stands at 13%. Things are looking good in the coming years, as buyers will soon be able to save $10,500 on stamp duty on a $500,000 property.


Rates and land taxes


Rates are going to be calculated differently for houses and units starting this year. Unit owners will pay roughly 11% more over the next financial year, while rates will increase by 7% for freestanding houses. Land taxes – which are only payable on investment properties – will also increase by 7%.


Increasing rates and land taxes is part of the government’s stamp duty reform and is expected to balance out the reduction and eventual dissolution of stamp duty.


Light Rail


In exciting news for South Canberra residents, more than $18 million has been dedicated to designing, planning and enabling works for the Woden Light Rail over the next year – connecting the area with the City and Airport.


Estimates suggest that by 2036, about 270,000 will live, work or study within a kilometre of the corridor. $939,000 has also been earmarked for a new fire and ambulance station in the Molonglo Valley.


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