WA to cut first-home stamp duty

The Western Australian Government is preparing to reduce stamp duties on purchases of first homes. The cuts are expected to be announced in the State budget in May. Abolishing stamp duty for first-home buyers would cost WA about $50 million a year but the state is already in line to receive an additional $231 million in federal GST funding in 2005. Currently, first-home buyers receive a $500 reduction in stamp duty. On a median-priced Perth home of $257,000 this still leaves buyers with a stamp duty bill of $10,000.