Harry Triguboff says NSW property stamp duty rules are punishing the Chinese

Harry Triguboff says NSW property stamp duty rules are punishing the Chinese
Harry Triguboff says NSW property stamp duty rules are punishing the Chinese

Sydney's apartment market has slowed, developer Harry Triguboff says.

The NSW decision to increase the stamp duty surcharge for foreign buyers to 8 per cent had put the housing market at risk, the Meriton founder said after a flurry of sales last month to foreign investors wanting to buy before a doubling in stamp duty charges.

"The market [has been] a bit slow since the beginning of July."

It was too early to say if the slowdown was a permanent change or not, he said.

"But we must understand there is a limit to how many tricks we can do," Mr Triguboff told The Australian Financial Review.

"We don't want investors, we want to punish Chinese.

"In the end, it takes its toll. We must remember that," he said.

"In June, we probably exchanged twice as much as we normally would because all the Chinese were in a hurry to buy and to be able to save on stamp duty," he said.

"Now this agitation has stopped and they have to face the reality that everything has changed."

He said Chinese buyers are more comfortable now than they were at the start of the year, when the refusal by local banks to fund their apartment purchases and slowing apartment values caused many to panic, Mr Triguboff said.

"In the beginning [of the year] it was terrible," he said noting the purchasers were not prepared for the problems which were created.

"So many of them wanted to get out.

"But then we told them they would have to lose the 10 per cent deposit, so they changed their mind.

"And we gave them the money.

"So many of them were saved."

In May, Mr Triguboff said he was financing about $200 million-worth of the $1.4 billion in sales he expected to make this year.

Like many other developers, Mr Triguboff said demand was now shifting to local buyers.

"The Australians are coming in, slowly," he said.

"The problem with Australians is they are very slow. They ask their lawyer, they ask their financial adviser, they ask their family, they ask everybody.

"The Chinese don't ask anybody, they come off the plane, buy their unit and go."

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Harry Triguboff Apartment Market

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