25 February 2019
More first home buyers are choosing to buy established properties rather than build new, according to reiwa.com analysis which shows the number of first home buyers in WA purchasing established properties increased 20 per cent between the December 2017 and 2018 quarters.
REIWA President Damian Collins said WA first home buyer preferences had shifted back towards established properties, despite the First Home Owner Grant only being in place for those who choose to purchase new builds.
“As it currently stands, the WA First Home Owner Grant unfairly penalises buyers wanting to purchase established properties by only providing assistance to those who choose to build. Initially, this had the effect of skewing first home buyer preferences towards new builds, but it appears more first home buyers are choosing to forgo the grant in favour of purchasing an existing property in an established suburb.
“It’s not fair that so many first home buyers are missing out on the grant, simply because they don’t want to build a new home. Or even worse, it means some first home buyers who want an established property are unable to enter the market. Housing affordability remains a significant hurdle for many West Australians and we should be encouraging and incentivising all first home buyers to enter the market, not just those who choose to build their first home,” Mr Collins said.
REIWA advocates for the reintroduction of a First Home Owner Grant for eligible first home buyers who purchase an established residential dwelling.
“Increasing the demand for established housing will have a knock-on effect to other areas of the market. This would allow more WA households to right size into accommodation that suits their changing needs, resulting in more transfer duty revenue for the state,” Mr Collins said.
“First home buyers have consistently shown they prefer to buy established homes. The WA Government should respect the preferences of first home buyers by not discriminating between established and new build properties, enabling more West Australians to make the dream of home ownership a reality.”