Queensland Law Society

Queensland Law Society warns of property fee increase

Date 25 Jul 2011
Contact Natalie Graeff, Manager Corporate Communication
Phone (07) 3842 5868
Mobile 0488 433 884
Fax 07 3221 9329
Email n.graeff@qls.com.au

Queensland Law Society warns non-first home buyers they are set to pay higher transfer fees from 31 July, after the State government cancelled the concession for transfer duties.

After this date, consumers will pay up to 30 percent more in transfer duties, equating to thousands of dollars being added to their property purchase, regardless of whether the new property is owner-occupied or is an investment purchase.

Transfer duty is a State government tax, previously called stamp duty, that is calculated on the value of the property being bought and sold.

The change to the duty was brought about due to the Queensland Building Boost program and the abolition of the ambulance levy.

The Building Boost program is designed to help the construction industry by offering those people buying a brand new home an additional $10,000. This can be in addition to the Commonwealth first home owner grant. However, the Building Boost program will have a limited life with the grant available to 31 January 2012.

Queensland Law Society CEO Noela L’Estrange said although the reform to State taxes on property transactions was great news for some, it had the potential to have severely negative consequences on others.

“We just want consumers to be fully aware of the change, as it stands to have a major impact on people’s decision to buy and possibly their ability to finance their purchase,” Ms L’Estrange said.

“For example, a property purchased for $350,000 will cost $10,075 in transfer fees after 31 July compared to $3,500 now.

“The government has done a great job promoting the benefits of the Building Boost program but we want to make sure people understand the full picture.”

Queensland Law Society advises those who are not first home buyers, to seek legal advice on how this change may affect their investment.