Hartsuyker upbeat on plan to tackle housing affordability

LOCAL MP Luke Hartsuyker has welcomed the introduction of legislation into Parliament to reduce pressure on housing affordability for first home buyers and downsizers.

The new measures are designed to help Australians save for their first home and also provide a greater incentive for retirement aged Australians to downsize into something easier to manage.

“When you look at the complexities of home ownership today, it’s clear that changes are needed on both ends of the home ownership spectrum to make the greatest impact, and increase accessibility,” Mr Hartsuyker said.

The First Home Super Saver Scheme (FHSSS), announced in this year’s Budget, will give first home savers the ability to accelerate their savings by at least 30 per cent.

First home buyers will be able to save for a house deposit within their superannuation by making voluntary contributions of up to $15,000 per year and $30,000 in total into their superannuation account.

These contributions, which are taxed at the discounted rate of 15 per cent, along with deemed earnings, can be withdrawn for a home deposit from July 1 next year. Withdrawals will be taxed at marginal tax rates less a 30 per cent offset.

“With many Australians entering the housing market later in life, this initiative will encourage first home buyers to save for a deposit more quickly,” Mr Hartsuyker said.

The Government has also introduced legislation to allow older Australians to contribute the proceeds of the sale of their family home to superannuation.

From July 1 2018, people aged over 65 will be able to make an additional non-concessional contribution of up to $300,000 into superannuation when they sell their home which they’ve held for at least 10 years. Both members of a couple can take advantage of this measure, meaning up to $600,000 of contributions may be made by a couple.

This measure will encourage people who may have been put off by downsizing because of the existing restrictions and caps, which in turns frees up larger homes for growing families.

“These measures, combined with the broader housing affordability package announced in the Budget, demonstrate real action from the Government to reduce housing affordability pressures for all Australians, including those living on the Mid North Coast,” Mr Hartsuyker said.

Further information on the First Home Super Saver Scheme is available at: http://www.budget.gov.au/2017-18/content/glossies/factsheets/html/HA_14.htm.

Further information on reducing barriers to downsizing is available at: http://www.budget.gov.au/2017-18/content/glossies/factsheets/html/HA_15.htm

First Home Buyers can also get an indication of how the scheme can benefit them by visiting: www.budget.gov.au/estimator.