Greens announce reforms to end negative gearing and boost affordable housing supply

Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Australian Greens have today announced a policy package to reform negative gearing and use the proceeds to boost affordable housing, building more than 14,500 new homes for our most vulnerable.

The policy package, released today by Senator Scott Ludlam, proposes to remove negative gearing for new investment properties and invest the proceeds in social and public housing instead.

"Low and middle-income Australians should not be forced to subsidise property investors through their taxes - it is fundamentally unfair," Senator Ludlam said today.

"It is time to call an end to this skewed concession that has contributed to the housing bubble and provides a tax benefit ten times greater for the highest income earners than for the lowest.

"Independent costings from the Parliamentary Budget Office (PBO), released today by the Greens, show that by ending negative gearing for new investments we will save $2.9 billion over the forward estimates.

"We propose to invest a substantial part of the savings in new housing supply; to take 15,000 families and individuals off the social housing waiting list over the next four years and directly fund construction of 7000 new homes for the homeless by 2020.

"This will lift employment in the construction sector and boost innovation in the modular housing industry.

"These costings from the PBO give Joe Hockey all the evidence he needs to take a look at negative gearing, rather than blindly ruling it out of their tax review.

"As part of a broader move towards restoring fairness to the tax system, we have also asked the PBO to examine capital gains tax concessions, which are overwhelmingly subsidised by low and middle income taxpayers.

"The Greens will work to deliver a fair and equitable tax system which helps everyone, rather than a system that uses unfair concessions to skew the property market," Senator Ludlam concluded.

Read more about the Greens' initiative here.