Just a friendly reminder that if you do your own taxes, you need to lodge your tax return by October 31. In the meantime, here are four stories about property, finance … and taxes:

  • Buyers enjoying more choice
  • Interest rate update
  • Property and climate change
  • Most people are now tax-ready

Read more below

Buyers are increasingly enjoying more choice, with a growing number of properties listed for sale in many parts of Australia.

The number of for-sale properties across the country in July was 0.6% higher than the month before, according to PropTrack.

Even better, listings in July were 4.9% higher than the year before, which is the largest year-on-year increase since 2010.

As always, conditions vary among the capitals cities:
  • Hobart listings in July were 70.0% higher than the year before
  • Sydney up 30.7%
  • Canberra up 24.8%
  • Darwin up 14.4%
  • Melbourne up 10.0%
  • Perth up 4.6%
  • Brisbane down 0.7%
  • Adelaide down 3.6%
If you want to buy a property, it’s important you contact me for a pre-approval before you begin the searching process. That way, you’ll know your budget. Also, vendors may be more likely to approve your offer if they know you have finance in place.

While variable interest rates are continuing to rise, and will almost certainly increase further, some lenders are actually cutting their fixed rates.

Lenders started increasing their variable rates in May, once the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) began increasing their cash rate. However, lenders increased their fixed rates much earlier, in anticipation of future rate hikes.

RBA data shows that interest rates for fixed loans:

  • with terms greater than three years have been trending up since December 2020
  • with terms of three years or less have been trending up since November 2021

Recently, some lenders have concluded that the RBA will not increase the cash rate as much as they originally expected. As a result, they feel some of their fixed rates were moved too high, which is why they’re now reversing course and making some reductions.

Unsure whether to go with a fixed loan, a variable loan or a split loan (which is part fixed and part variable)? I’ll be happy to talk you through the pros and cons of each option.

Contact me for interest rate guidance
The government’s new climate change legislation will have significant implications for Australian real estate, assuming it gets approved by Senate.
The Climate Change Bill 2022, which has been approved by the House of Representatives, will enshrine into law an emissions reduction target of 43% from 2005 levels by 2030 and net zero emissions by 2050.
Real Estate Institute of Australia president Hayden Groves said that while the legislation does not specifically regulate residential real estate, he expects developers will pay more attention to energy efficiency measures and will also become more transparent about the energy efficiency of their buildings.
“And with that, the government hopes, so too will consumer preference and markets. Already, there is an emerging body of research that shows that homes demonstrating sustainable features currently command a premium.”
Mr Groves also noted that the government had called its emissions reductions targets a “floor, not a ceiling”, which might lead to further sustainability policies or investments in the future.

Most taxpayers can now lodge their tax returns, as more than 80 million pieces of information are available in pre-fill.

The Australian Taxation Offie said much of the information it collects from employers, banks, private health insurers, share registries and other institutions has now been loaded into people’s tax returns.

“While having this data ready to go cuts down time, taxpayers still need to check that their details are accurate and ensure any other information that hasn’t been pre-filled is manually added,” according to the ATO.

“For example, income from rentals, side hustles and the Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment from Services Australia will need to be manually added.”

Your employer will provide an income statement or payment summary that shows the amounts received and the tax withheld. If you had more than one employer during the 2021-22 financial year, you will have more than one income statement.

Before lodging, make sure your income statement is marked as ‘Tax ready‘ by your employer.

Once you’ve lodged, you can monitor the progress of your tax return through ATO online services, the ATO app or by phone.