New property tax in NSW

Thanks to @michaelyardney for this

Premier's sneaky tax on property
By Simon Benson From: The Daily Telegraph May 13, 2010 12:00AM

Sneaky new property tax in NSW - Libs
The NSW government has been accused of using the federal budget to sneak through a property tax.

*The NSW Government has passed another property tax, adding $200 - $1000 to the cost of buying a home / File
*(NSW Government passes new property tax
*Likely to add $200 - $1000 to cost of home
*Passed during the Federal Budget on Tuesday

NSW homebuyers will be slugged with a $90 million property tax in an audacious Keneally Government cash grab under the cover of the Federal Budget.
In a slap in the face to Prime Minister Kevin Rudd - and western Sydney's mortgage belt voters - the tax was quietly slipped through the NSW Upper House late yesterday.

Expected to come into effect at the same time as electricity prices increase in July, the tax will add between $200 and $1000 to the cost of buying a home and will apply on transfer fees for properties worth more than $500,000.

The median Sydney house price in March was $595,745, according to Australian Property Monitors.

Businesses will not be spared. Commercial investors expect to pay up to $500,000 in extra taxes on typical CBD office space.

The tax will be added to the existing tax on title transfers at 0.2 per cent on properties between $500,000 and $1 million and 0.25 per cent above that.

"That they tried to hide it under the coverage of our Budget makes it worse," the source said.

The new levy will be imposed despite NSW Treasurer Eric Roozendaal's admission that Tuesday's federal Budget delivered extra revenue to NSW. It was also announced three weeks ahead of the NSW Government's Budget.

Premier Kristina Keneally justified the tax, claiming it was needed to stop property fraud. She said it would apply to only 30 per cent of all property transactions.

But the property industry yesterday labelled it a "big new tax".

"We had absolutely no idea this was coming," Property Council NSW acting executive director Glenn Byres said yesterday.

"We have an investment climate that is poor, a 50-year low in construction levels and this hits residential and has a big impact on commercial property investment."