It’s become hip to be anti-property: Terry Ryder

It’s become hip to be anti-property: Terry Ryder
It’s become hip to be anti-property: Terry Ryder

Did Australia pass a prohibition law on property investment but forget to tell anyone?

Somewhere in recent history, buying property has mutated from a normal part of Australian life into something with the odour of dealing in illicit drugs on murky street corners.

Mums and dads trying to provide for their kids’ education are accused of smashing the dreams of first-home buyers.

Those seeking to fund their retirement without burdening the state are labeled speculators.

People on average incomes who own one investment property – i.e. the majority of property investors - are portrayed as greedy bastards ripping off the tax system.

Foreign buyers of Australian property treated as criminals by the buffoon otherwise known as the Federal Treasurer.

Suddenly, property investment is everyone’s top-of-mind political football. Property investors have become the whipping boy of choice for everyone from the Prime Minister to the Reserve Bank to lefty lunatic fringe dwellers. It’s become hip to be anti-property.

Investors are there to be exploited, pilloried and abused. Regulators are having a field day, banks are boosting their profits and local councils are propping up their balance sheets by hammering property investors.

So Australia needs to make a fundamental decision: is property investment okay or is it not?

Last time I checked, it was legal. Last time I analysed it, it was an activity that benefited the nation. Every way I look at it, it’s something that should be nurtured, especially if Australia wants its citizens to be self-funded in retirement.

Unfortunately, the politicians who run the country or parts of it don’t see investors as valued citizens undertaking worthy activities. They treat them as bunnies ripe for exploitation, both financially and politically. 

Over $70 billion gets ripped out of the real estate industry in taxes every year. The cost to the public purse of negative gearing is petty cash by comparison.

Politicians, being the inherently-dishonest bottom feeders that they are, are happy to blame affordability issues on investors. It’s a convenient distraction from the fundamental truth that politicians’ taxes on real estate activity add 40% to the cost of every new home built in Australia.

Local councils subsidise the rates charged to their constituents by slamming investor owners with higher charges. State Governments slug them with higher rates of stamp duty and a medieval impost called land tax.

Banks are exploiting the APRA brain explosion by slugging investor borrowers with higher interest rates at a time when the trend is overwhelmingly to lower interest rates. 

Everywhere investors turn, lenders and bureaucrats and political activists and elected representatives are doing their damnedest to damage them.

So what’s the answer to that fundamental question, Australia? Is real estate investment okay or not?

You need to decide. And then get out of the way.

 

TERRY RYDER is the founder of hotspotting.com.au. You can email him or follow him on Twitter.

Terry Ryder

Terry Ryder

Terry Ryder is the founder of hotspotting.com.au.

Tags: 
First Home Buyers Property investment

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