While the build-to-rent (BTR) sector has already established its position in the property markets of countries such as the UK, Canada, and the US, the Australian market is slowly catching up with the emerging trend of Developers turning landlords. The national economy has suffered a hit as a result of the pandemic, nonetheless, we see positive movements in the construction industry.

BTR developments are housing projects where one owner, often the Developer, owns all the apartments of the development. The intent is to create a space that is designed, built, and managed specifically for the renter, as opposed to the built-to-sell developments, where the focus is on exceeding return of investment. Having one owner for the entire development translates to long-term ownership, promotes better quality renting options, and as a result, encourages stability in the Australian property market.

However, a disadvantage that has been hindering the BTR sector’s growth is Land Tax; an apartment building as a whole is most likely to exceed the basic land threshold, and as Land Tax is paid yearly over the lifetime of an investment, it eats away at potential return. This is where we see positive movement in the industry; the NSW Government is recognising the value of BTR and has introduced a fifty percent Land Tax reduction for BTR investors.

Additional tax benefits for BTR owners are the generous deductions that are claimable as a result of natural wear and tear to a building and its assets. A tax depreciation schedule allows owners to claim yearly deductions on their investment property over a forty-year period. For new buildings, these claimable deductions are usually higher than any other income-producing property.

The BTR sector is predicted to gain a foothold in the Australian property market, and we can understand why; firstly, with the recent tax changes, the model is attracting a new set of investors in the construction industry, secondly, the required management and maintenance of a completed built will generate jobs, and finally, it brings more security to the renter (note that one-in-three Australians are renters). The model is not a perfect recipe for Australian economic recovery, but we are intrigued to see how the BTR sector evolves across our nation in the next years.

At Archi-QS we specialise in tax depreciation, and for over 25 years we have ensured that our clients are able to maximise their claim. Do not hesitate to get in contact if you have any questions related to tax depreciation for BTR developments. We are here to help.

Read more about the tax changes for BTR developments at NSW Government Revenue: https://www.revenue.nsw.gov.au/news-media-releases/land-tax-build-to-rent