Federal Budget 2018/19

The Federal Budget was presented on Tuesday evening by Treasurer Scott Morrison, with a major focus on taxation reform, including tax cuts for low to middle income earners, and future abolition of one of the tax brackets to eliminate the disincentive of ‘bracket creep’.

Issues like housing affordability were not addressed; however, incentives have been offered for pensioners with significant equity in their place of residence to draw on this equity to supplement their income without impacting on their pension.  This will be welcome news for some.

For investors owning vacant land, there is a measure brought in that you need to be aware of, involving tax deductions.

From 1 July 2019, tax deductions will not be allowed for expenses associated with holding vacant land. This is claimed to be an integrity measure to address concerns that deductions are being improperly claimed for expenses, such as interest costs related to holding vacant land where the land is not genuinely held for the purpose of earning assessable income. The government says that it will also reduce tax incentives for land banking, which deny the use of land for housing or other development.

The measure will apply to land held for residential or commercial purposes. However, the “carrying on a business” test will generally exclude land held for commercial development.

The good news for the wider Sunshine Coast region is the commitment to significant investment in transport infrastructure.

  • $390 million for the region’s rail duplication between Beerburrum and Nambour and the $3.3 billion for key Bruce Highway upgrades were announced in the weeks leading up to the budget.
  • The Federal Government is continuing to fund the $800 million Cooroy to Curra Section D Bruce Highway works and the $880 million Pine River to Caloundra road upgrades.

This Sunday is Mother’s Day; on behalf of the team at Wright Place, I wish all those wonderful women out there a HAPPY MOTHER’S Day!  Enjoy, you deserve it.