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Parliamentary Questions

Question Without Notice No. 1175 asked in the Legislative Council on 17 October 2019 by Hon Charles Smith

Minister responding: Hon P.C. Tinley
Parliament: 40 Session: 1

Answered on 17 October 2019

HOUSING — HOME OWNERSHIP

1175. Hon CHARLES SMITH to the minister representing the Minister for Housing:

I refer to the recent article in The West Australian in which John Carey, MLA, Perth, states that now is a good time to buy property. With escalating concerns over apartment quality, alongside developer bankruptcies, household income stagnating, unemployment set to rise and households already carrying huge debt, can the minister explain why now is a good time to buy property?

Hon STEPHEN DAWSON replied:

I thank the honourable member for some notice of the question.

Home ownership is an investment for the long term. It is an investment in a family's future to provide long-term housing stability and to create wealth. Such long-term investment decisions recognise the fact that there will be short and medium-term cycles in economic and market activity. Given that interest rates are low and property prices are relatively more affordable than they have been for a long time, it is clear that now is very good time to consider entering the property market, particularly for first home buyers and others who are not selling as well as buying. The McGowan government is growing the economy, delivering the state's first surplus in five years and has already created 56 000 new jobs since coming to office. Combined with initiatives such as cutting TAFE fees by 50 per cent, keeping cost-of-living increases to their lowest level for 13 years —

Several members interjected.

The PRESIDENT: Order! I actually would like to hear the answer, but it is really hard to hear the minister with everyone making noise.

Hon STEPHEN DAWSON: Thank you, Madam President.

Combined with initiatives such as cutting TAFE fees by 50 per cent, keeping cost-of-living increases to their lowest level for 13 years and providing increased finance options through Keystart, the government is providing the stability and confidence that is likely to encourage people to consider moving from renting into home ownership. The McGowan government's record compares favourably with the record of the previous Liberal–National government, which delivered record debt and deficits, an economic recession, three land tax increases, and no new jobs between 2013 and 2017, and it increased TAFE fees by 510 per cent. The McGowan government's investment in Metronet will improve access to services and amenity for our community. Through the Department of Communities, the government is providing new affordable home ownership opportunities to help individuals and families realise the many benefits that this new infrastructure will provide.