Recent political debate on housing affordability has been conducted in a fact-free vacuum. Home owners receive more from the tax system than investors.
Negative gearing helps investors but the home owner receives substantially more benefits. Nevertheless, for both of them, housing over the last 5 years was a great investment - far better than the superannuation they are forced to contribute to.
Mr SHORTEN (Maribyrnong—Leader of the Opposition) (19:31): This is a budget and a government that wants to bury its past and rewrite its history. The Liberals want Australians to forget four wasted years in which wages growth has hit record lows, unemployment is up, underemployment and casualisation are at record highs, living standards have stagnated, inequality has widened. This budget is an admission of guilt, a signed confession.
Politically it is brilliant, redolent of the Menzies’ method of stealing your opponent’s clothes. Economically it is a disaster, although it does deal with the debt situation, but at a cost.
The inability of Labor’s Treasury Spokesman, Chris Bowen, to explain how Labor’s new housing “affordability” policies could decrease house prices shows it is not about affordability at all.
If the aim of federal government policies is to increase affordability without decreasing house prices, then there is only one solution – allowing potential purchasers access to all their savings, including superannuation.
This week's program concentrated on flooding, politicians and townplanning.
The analysis by the majority is fundamentally sound, and avoids the mistake of thinking that housing affordability can be fixed by introducing more Commonwealth Government regulation and tax. But it misses the real problem for first home buyers, which is the deposit gap.
We've just submitted our submission to the Federal Government Free Speech Inquiry.
A survey of 1020 Australians demonstrates broad support for the government's ABCC Bill, but no support for an anti-union campaign.