Strata Title Stamp Duty Moratorium a priority

Monday 26 March 2012

Strata Title Stamp Duty Moratorium a priority

Last week a federal parliamentary committee requested that the Queensland Government or should we say new Queensland Government, put a 12-month moratorium on strata title stamp duty to ease what it describes as a "crisis" in the state's north.

In fact it is one of nine recommendations from the House of Representatives' inquiry into the affordability of residential strata title insurance.  The inquiry heard evidence from unit owners, in areas including Cairns and Port Douglas, that insurance costs have increased by more than 500 per cent.

The parliamentray committee's chairman, Queensland MP Graham Perrett, predicts that a 12-month reprieve from stamp duty on premiums is the most immediate way of reducing this onerus insurance burden.

"The reality is that as stamp duty is 7 1/2% and GST is 10% on the actual premium, on the actual policy, so that when you have a policy increase of 500% there's arguably a windfall profit for both the Commonwealth Government in terms of GST and the State Government in terms of royalties," he said.

During the lead up to the recent state election, Mr Perrett brought this subject to the attention of all the candidates in the hopes that now we have, in most cases, new members of State parliament they will see fit to get this urgent matter high on the agenda to give some much needed relief to a very distressed part of north Queensland. 

It will be interesting to see how the newly elected members react to this high priority matter.  It may be a cynical view but sometimes they don't keep their promises!

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