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What Australia's 2017 Budget means for property buyers

Australia's 2017 Budget has been announced, featuring new measures to help the country's first-time property buyers, as well as benefits for investors who buy in to affordable housing schemes.

Treasurer of the Commonwealth of Australia Scott Morrison explained that the government will provide extra financial assistance to people looking to purchase their first home in the country, with a new tax cut set to be rolled out to first-time buyers.

In his Budget speech on Tuesday May 9th, Mr Morrison stated: "First home buyers will be able to save for a deposit by salary sacrificing into their superannuation account over and above their compulsory superannuation contribution from July 1st.

"The First Home Super Savers Scheme will attract the tax advantages of superannuation. Contributions and earnings will be taxed at 15 per cent, rather than marginal rates and withdrawals will be taxed at their marginal rate, less 30 percentage points."

Although contributions will initially be limited to $15,000 per year and $30,000 per person in total, the majority of people saving to buy their first property in Australia should see their savings increase by a minimum of 30 per cent.

In addition, the government wants to incentivise older people to free up housing stock for younger buyers to keep the property market moving, so will be enabling over-65s to make a non-concessional contribution of up to $300,000 into their superannuation fund from the sale of their home if they agree to downsize.

New measures to support more affordable housing are also set to be rolled out, including the establishment of a brand new National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation to provide increased financial support to those investing in affordable housing from July 2018 onwards.

Other measures announced in the Budget include tax cuts for small businesses, significant expansion of the Western Sydney Airport and other transport infrastructure, and the creation of a $472 million Regional Growth Fund to encourage regional communities to take greater control of their own economic fortunes.

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