Scrapping stamp duty in South Australia could have far-reaching benefits for the state’s property industry, including encouraging more people to seek home loan refinancing. The Property Council of Australia explained that a decline in building approvals data throughout the state suggests something needs to be done sooner rather than later.

“Stamp duty discourages South Australians from buying and selling property and is a barrier to older people downsizing from the family home,” said the group’s SA Executive Director Daniel Gannon.

“Abolishing stamp duty is critical to encouraging greater productivity and job creation in South Australia’s economy, particularly as the rate of overall home ownership is in slow decline.”

Official building approvals data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) shows the number of construction projects given the go-ahead across the country increased 0.2 per cent in November. South Australia, on the other hand, saw its approvals fall 1.1 per cent in trend terms.

Mr Gannon emphasised that private sector housing approvals also fell in South Australia, ending the month 0.7 per cent lower than it started. This occurred against the backdrop of rises in some other parts of the country, such as Queensland and Victoria.

The Property Council of Australia claimed stamp duty doesn’t give people the encouragement they need to move up the ladder – or get onto it if they’ve yet to secure a first home buyer loan.

ABS data revealed residential building values declined throughout November, making it the 12th month in a row such a trend has been registered. Non-residential building, on the other hand, was down 1 per cent in trend terms.

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