Foreign Buyer Duty
Navigating the expectations of buyers in understanding their requirement to remit foreign buyer duty is inevitable. The declaration must be made by the buyer and it is strongly advised that you do not assist buyers in making any determination on their behalf where there is any doubt.
Foreign individuals are classified as an individual who is not an Australian citizen, or does not hold a permanent or special category visa. In other words, if you are either (i) Australian citizen; (ii) Australian permanent visa holder; or (iii) a special category visa holder – you are not foreign.
Confusion can occur when dealing with New Zealanders who benefit from close ties to Australia. OSR have noted that:
Provided a New Zealand citizen has a valid special category visa when they acquire the property, they will not be liable to pay foreign transfer duty. If the visa lapses, is cancelled or revoked for any reason prior to settlement, they would need to notify OSR.
It is recommend you advise your clients, where doubt exists, to submit a web enquiry or contact OSR on 9262 1100.
To find out more refer buyers to the Visa Holder Enquiry tool for visa enquiries hosted by the Department of Home Affairs.
Source: 23rd January 2019 AICWA e-Newsletter
Foreign Buyers Duty
For transactions executed on or after 1 January 2019, an additional 7% duty will be chargeable on the dutiable value of certain acquisitions of residential property by foreign buyers.
Each person acquiring land in Western Australia must complete a foreign buyers declaration form HERE declaring whether they are a foreign person.
The Online Duties system will be modified to allow self-assessment of most dutiable transactions that are chargeable with foreign buyers duty.
For the purposes of the foreign buyers duty, residential property is –
1. land in Western Australia that is, or is capable of being, or is intended to be, used solely or dominantly for residential purposes;
2. vacant or substantially vacant land that is zone solely for residential purposes; or
3. any estate of interest in land described in (1) or (2).
A foreign person includes a foreign individual, corporation or trust.
See the foreign transfer duty HERE and foreign landholder duty fact sheets HERE for information about foreign persons and residential property.
Exemptions or nominal transfer duty
Most dutiable transactions that would be eligible for nominal duty or an exemption from transfer duty will also be exempt from foreign buyers duty. This includes certain transactions involving family court orders and matrimonial agreements, deceased estate transactions and partitions of residential property.
Face-to-face customer education sessions commenced in December 2018. Visit our OSR's education page to register now for upcoming sessions HERE.
Foreign buyer duty publications, frequently asked questions and other support material is available HERE
For more information on foreign buyers duty, see the legislation available on the Western Australian Parliament website HERE
Watch the Video HERE
Source: 19th December 2018 AICWA e-Newsletter
CIRCULAR 17 DUTIES ACT 2008
Foreign Buyers Duty
The Duties Amendment (Additional Duty for Foreign Persons) Bill 2018 (‘the Bill’) was second read into Parliament on 13 June 2018. The Bill operates to amend the Duties Act 2008 (‘Duties Act’) to impose additional duty on certain transactions involving foreign persons or entities acquiring residential property in Western Australia.
These amendments are subject to the passing of the Bill by Parliament and the granting of Royal Assent. The changes are proposed to come into effect on 1 January 2019.
The information provided in this circular is not an exhaustive explanation of the amendments, and reference should be made to the Bill and the Explanatory Memorandum available on the Western Australian Parliament website.
READ MORE HERE
Duty Training Sessions
AICWA will be liaising with OSR to deliver training opportunities to facilitate the Foreign Buyer Duty remittance. Stay tuned for more!
Source:10th October 2018 AICWA e-Newsletter
Thanks to the R.E.I.W.A. in depth analysis...
‘Business as usual’ budget fails to reinvigorate property market.
REIWA welcomes the WA Government’s decision not to increase property taxes, but is disappointed in the distinct lack of leadership on display in the 2018-19 State Budget, with no new initiatives included to address housing affordability or reinvigorate the property sector.
REIWA President Hayden Groves said while it was pleasing there were no increases to property taxes, this year’s budget was a mundane budget for the property market.
On 1 July 2017, the proposed changes to the Foreign Resident Capital Gains Withholding (FRCGW) rate and threshold will take effect.
These changes will apply to contracts entered into on, or after 1 July 2017 for real property disposals where the contract price is $750,000 and above. The FRCGW tax rate will also change from the existing rate of 10% to 12.5%.
The existing $2 million threshold and 10% rate will still apply for any contracts entered into before 1 July 2017 even if they are not due to settle until after 1 July 2017.
The change to the threshold from $2 million to $750,000 will result in many more properties requiring a clearance certificate for exemption of the withholding. The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) can only grant clearance certificates to a seller who is an Australian resident.
Budget 2017 Update
GST On New Residential Purchases
From 1 July 2018 the Federal Government will require all purchasers of new residential premises (new builds) to remit the GST component previously provided by developers/builders directly to the ATO as part of the property settlement process.
Little is known of the changes other than what has been recently posted on the ATO website HERE
New Charge for Foreign Owners for Empty Properties
Foreign persons who apply for approval to purchase residential property after 9 May 2017 will face a new annual vacancy charge to be imposed if the property is not occupied for at least six months per year.
The charge will be levied annually and will be equivalent to the purchase application fee imposed at the time the property was acquired by the foreign investor.
Details of the new charge can be viewed HERE
FIRB approval for sale of new apartments limited to 50%
Developers selling under a New Dwelling Exemption Certificate issued by FIRB will now
From July 1 2017, new Commonwealth Government reporting requirements will be introduced that will affect all real estate property transfers in Western Australia.
The reporting requirements are being introduced following agreement by Commonwealth, State and Territory Treasurers to establish a National Register of Foreign Ownership of Land Titles. This Register will be administered nationally by the ATO. In WA, Landgate will collect and report the required information to the ATO.
For each transaction of freehold (and some leasehold interests)
Spring time sees more property settlements and transactions across Australia than any other season, according to leading conveyancing technology experts GlobalX.
GlobalX CEO Peter Maloney said from September to November the grass is greener, gardens are in full bloom and the weather is comfortably warm, making for optimal house selling conditions.
Mr Maloney said spring sales were often driven by the desire for a new beginning, with individuals, couples and families preferring to move before the end of the year.
“Buyers who have children prefer to get settled ahead of the new school year, and a spring sale means relocation can take place near or over the holiday period, allowing ample time for unpacking,” Mr Maloney said.
Things could be looking up for homebuyers, with a new report forecasting a drop in property prices over the next three years. But could this also signal the end of the Australian property market golden era?
According to BIS Shrapnel's Residential Property Prospects 2016-2019 report, median house and unit prices in our capital cities will be lower by 2019. This is due to a perfect storm of slower population growth, falling immigration levels and an oversupply of new homes.
The Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority's recent work to tighten lending standards has slowed investor activity, also contributing to the downward trend. Investors have previously been a huge driver of market demand, particularly in Sydney and Melbourne.
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