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Have your say on foreign investment in homes

02-March-2015

Have your say on foreign investment in homes

The Federal Member for Aston, the Hon Alan Tudge MP, is encouraging Knox locals to have their say on strengthening the rules on foreign investment in residential homes.  

Mr Tudge has received hundreds of emails and calls from concerned locals about the effect of foreign investment on housing affordability and young families trying to buy their first home.

Today, the Federal Government announced stronger enforcement mechanisms to ensure fairness and accountability in the residential housing market.

Consultations will occur over the coming month to gain feedback on how best to ensure compliance and enforcement of the rules for foreign investment in homes.

Under the current rules, non-residential foreign investors can purchase new property only, but cannot purchase existing property. They must get also receive Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) approval.

Temporary residents can also purchase new property, but they can also purchase one existing property to use as a residence while they live in Australia. They must divest the property within 3 months of leaving the country at the expiry of the visa.

The announced changes include the establishment of a specialist compliance and enforcement area within the ATO; new financial penalties for breaches of the foreign investment rules (which can include 25 per cent of the price of the property); and new application fees on all foreign investment proposals.

Mr Tudge is encouraging Knox locals to contribute their views to consultations.

“Many locals have raised with me their concerns that they or their children are being priced out of the property market by overseas investors.”

“Young people are worried about the cost of buying their first home. We need to look at options to support them.”

“Foreign investment is important, but we need to get the balance right and make sure young families are not disadvantaged.”

“I encourage concerned residents to make a submission about what should be done to make investment in real estate fair,” said Mr Tudge.

Submissions are open until 20 March 2015 and can be made at http://www.treasury.gov.au/ConsultationsandReviews/Consultations/2015/Strengthening-Australias-foreign-investment-framework

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