Less time to pay stamp duty
Stamp duty is an issue at the forefront of most buyers’ minds.
Home buyers and sellers generally focus on the amount of stamp duty that has to be paid when they buy a home, rather than when it has to be paid.
Given that Victoria is second only to the Northern Territory when ranked by its reliance on stamp duty, and the fact that at almost every price point Victoria’s is the highest, the focus on the cost is an understandable one.
It is worth noting, however, that home buyers will soon have less time to pay. The Victorian Government is currently considering legislation that seeks to reduce the deadline for paying stamp duty from 90 days after settlement to 30 days.
This change will have a small and temporary fiscal benefit for the state government as it will ‘bring forward’ income it expects to receive in the 2012–2013 financial year into the current one.
As both the government and opposition are supporting this measure, it is likely to be made law and, as a result for contracts settled on or after 1 April 2012, the stamp duty will be payable within 30 days of settlement.
This change is not expected to affect many home buyers, as the vast majority – 85 per cent – already pay within 30 days.