We have previously written about the numerous changes to the Additional Foreign Acquirers Duty for property purchases in Australia by foreigners, and several of the major changes stemming from the 2017 budget have come into effect on 1 July 2018.

As a result of the mid-year fiscal economic review, it is expected that the foreign acquirer duty rate is going to increase from the current 3% to 7%.  Transitional arrangements for contracts entered into before 1 July 2018 but settling after that date have not yet been confirmed, and accordingly, foreign persons intending on purchasing property in Queensland should consider the timing of their transactions in light of the recent changes.

In relation to the GST Withholding regime, changes which have also kicked off on 1 July 2018 will require individuals selling residential properties to notify the buyer prior to settlement whether GST is payable or not, and if so the GST must be paid to the ATO prior to settlement or by way of cheque on the day of settlement.  This change is in an effort to eliminate the prevalence of developers selling residential properties, and will likely have a significant impact on cash flow for some vendors.

The shift to e-conveyancing is also gaining momentum and the rollout of PEXA services has been expanded to include priority notices, caveats and withdrawal of caveats, transfers, foreign ownership information forms, mortgages and release of mortgages with many more documents in the pipeline to be included.

Some of our previous articles pertaining to this topic are below should you wish to have a read through:

As always, Affinity Lawyers have an experienced and professional team in place ready to assist with any of your conveyancing and property needs, so feel free to telephone our Gold Coast office today on 07 5563 8970 to discuss your specific requirements.