Boomer politician NSW Opposition Leader Mark Speakman reveals why landlords are not to blame for skyrocketing rents – as Labor land tax changes hit him personally

A boomer politician who owns a very expensive investment property says punishing landlords will ultimately hurt renters.

NSW Opposition Leader Mark Speakman, 64, rents out a $6million four-bedroom house at Woollahra, in Sydney’s east.

He argued Labor’s land tax plan, announced in Tuesday’s state Budget, would hurt not just landlords but also renters, given Sydney’s rental vacancy rate is at an ultra-low 1.4 per cent.

‘The last thing you do in the middle of a housing crisis, while people are struggling with the cost of living, is increase land tax – meaning higher costs that will be passed on to renters and struggling business owners,’ he told Daily Mail Australia.

State Treasurer Daniel Mookhey’s second Budget is aiming to raise $1.5billion over four years by freezing the land tax threshold at $1.075million. 

‘These are modest adjustments against the backdrop of a generational housing crisis,’ he said.

‘The government has been upfront with the people of NSW. 

NSW Opposition Leader Mark Speakman, 64, rents out a $6million four-bedroom house at Woollahra, in Sydney’s east (he is pictured, left, with his Liberal deputy Natalie Ward)

‘We intend to pull every lever we can to confront the housing crisis and build the homes the people of NSW need.’

As house prices increase, more homes will have land values above $1.075million, meaning more landlords will be paying $100 plus a 1.6 per cent tax, up to land values of $6.571million.

The land value of Mr Speakman’s Woollahra property is estimated at $4.54million, which means he already pays $55,540 annually in land tax.

But given Woollahra’s median house price has increased by 10.3 per cent during the past year, he is likely to be paying even higher land tax as the value of his investment home kept on increasing even in the face of high interest rates. 

Mr Speakman, who delivered his Budget reply speech on Thursday, said Labor’s decision to freeze land tax indexation was ‘a tax grab by stealth and is a result of Labor’s budget mismanagement’.

Mr Speakman receives $2,825 a week, or $146,900 annually, renting out his four-bedroom house at Woollahra.

Property records show the former practising barrister paid $1.3million for the Weeroona Avenue home in March 2011. It now now worth an estimated $5.9million

Property records show the former practising barrister paid $1.3million for the Weeroona Avenue home in March 2011. It now now worth an estimated $5.9million

The land value of Mr Speakman's Woollahra property is estimated at $4.54million, which means he already pays $55,540 annually in land tax

The land value of Mr Speakman’s Woollahra property is estimated at $4.54million, which means he already pays $55,540 annually in land tax

Property records show the former practising barrister paid $1.3million for the Weeroona Avenue home in March 2011, the month he was elected as the member for Cronulla in Sydney’s beachside Sutherland Shire in the election that ended 16 years of Labor rule.

CoreLogic estimates this house and land asset would now conservatively be worth $5.9million in an upmarket suburb where the median house price is $4.9million.

The estimated $6million value of his Woollahra house could buy four median-priced Sydney houses worth $1.4million, or six houses in an outer south-west suburb like Liverpool where $1million is the mid-point.

***
Read more at DailyMail.co.uk