In a pre-budget submission, the Housing Industry Association (HIA) has advised the federal government to explore opportunities that could reduce upfront home buyer levies.
HIA believes that the government should ramp up funding for the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation (NHFIC) to allow the body to investigate the possibility of adopting innovative state and local financing measures to reduce residential property entry costs.
“New home buyers are required to make significant upfront contributions to the funding of community infrastructure,” HIA noted.
“As the cost of land increases, the tax take from these home buyer levies grows and, in the last decade, they have become one of the key barriers to delivering more affordable housing in all forms.”
HIA attributed high entry costs for new home buyers to increased taxes passed on by state and local governments imposed to ease “fiscal pressures” faced by the governments.
The industry association believes that such cost hikes can be averted if the commonwealth government funds the nationwide adoption of new, innovative measures.
“Fiscal pressure on state and local governments has been the main force behind these moves to pass down the costs of community infrastructure,” HIA stated.
“However, there are alternative methods for funding and delivering this infrastructure that could be trialled if there was an incentive for state and/or local governments to pilot these approaches.”
HIA also advised the federal government to continue funding the Smart Cities Initiative, which it believes offers practical solutions for infrastructure and planning “bottlenecks”.
[Related: Fresh calls for low-deposit home loans]