Meriton looking to encourage off-the-plan buyers with stamp duty savings

Meriton looking to encourage off-the-plan buyers with stamp duty savings
Meriton looking to encourage off-the-plan buyers with stamp duty savings

Australia’s biggest apartment developer, Meriton, has been obliged to join a spate of other NSW apartment developers by offering incentives to encourage off-the-plan investors in its apartment projects.

Meriton is currently offering to refund stamp duty on six of its NSW apartment projects following changes announced in June to state government housing incentives. Other builders have also come up with their own incentives to encourage sales.

A spokesperson declined to comment on the launch of the incentives.

Meriton boss Harry Triguboff was a vocal critic of the changes to NSW government handouts announced in the June budget, which resulted in investors losing out on generous stamp duty savings, while first-home buyers must wait until October 1 for a more generous scheme if they are buying a new home.

At the time these changes were introduced Triguboff lamented that they would kill off investors “while still not giving birth to the first-home buyers [until October 1]”.

Up until June 30 anyone, including investors, could save as much as $22,490 under the NSW Home Builders' Bonus, which provided a full stamp duty exemption for new homes up to a value of $600,000.

This has been replaced with a $5,000 government handout for investors and non-first-home buyers for new homes up to a value of $650,000.

First-home buyers can still access handouts worth $27,240 ($7,000 first-home owners grant plus up to $20,240 under the First Home – New Home scheme).

However, under the June budget changes, they will get an extra $8,000 from October 1 with the doubling of the first-home owners’ grant to $15,000, but only if they buy a new house or apartment.

Meriton's stamp-duty refund campaign comes as Meriton continues to acquire sites in Sydney and build its pipeline of future apartment projects.

Meriton has acquired five sites since the start of the year with capacity for over 2,000 units and an end value of $1.3 billion. The most recent purchase was on McEvoy Street in Waterloo, with plans for 220 apartments.

Meriton built 1,438 apartments last year and is expecting to build 1,570 this year, The Australian reported. Triguboff says a high proportion of the apartments will be held as serviced apartments. By the end of the year Meriton will have nearly 6,000 serviced apartments in its portfolio.

Meriton is considering buying a Brookfield's site on the corner of Pitt Street and Bathurst Street in the Sydney CBD, which is proposed as the site for Sydney's tallest residential tower, rising to 65 storeys.

Meriton is currently offering a stamp duty refund on its Warriewood development on Sydney’s northern beaches.

Prices start from $330,000 on a studio apartment and $470,000 for a one-bedroom apartment.

Stamp duty payable would be $10,340 on the studio apartment and $16,640 on the one-bedroom apartment, with investors also eligible for the $5,000 state government handout.

The five other projects Meriton is offering stamp duty refunds are:

  • Rhodes Peninsula, apartments prices under $650,000
  • Epping Park, apartments prices under $650,000
  • Macquarie, apartments priced under $700,000
  • Fusion, Arncliffe, apartments prices under $650,000
  • Alcove, St Ives, apartments prices under $650,000

Larry Schlesinger

Larry Schlesinger

Larry Schlesinger was a property writer at Property Observer

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