Independent Senator Nick Xenophon wants the rules changed to allow first home buyers to pull money from their superannuation savings for a house deposit.
The South Australia Senator says a scheme now operating in Canada, allowing up to $25,000 to be accessed, has lead to improved housing affordability. In Canada the amount has to be paid back into the super fund within 15 years.
“With more and more Australians finding it difficult to break into home ownership, adopting the Canadian scheme would make a difference to many thousands of Australians each year,” he says.
He will introduce legislative changes in the Spring session of federal parliament.
In Australia, first home buys are being squeezed investors, local and foreign, and a two-year run in rising prices.
House prices are way above historical averages, according to a report by the International Monetary Fund which places Australia third among developed nations on the ratio of house prices to incomes, and fifth on house prices to rents.
A Senate Economics References Committee hearing in Adelaide today was told by HomeStart Finance, an arm of the South Australian Government, there’s something strange about being able to access a super fund if you are about to default on your housing loan, but you can’t access it to put a deposit on a home in the first place.