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GST and property: It's only 10% so what's the problem? paper


Property issues continue to be the biggest source of legal disputes in regards to the GST. The reasons for these are many including:

  • The distinction between the GST treatment of the various forms of property, including residential premises
  • The misinformation surrounding the application of the margin scheme to residential premises
  • "Expert" opinions on GST matters by real estate agents and developers
  • A lack of understanding of GST by both (or either) party of the transaction
  • A lack of understanding of the details by some lawyers
  • The complexity of the "supply of a going concern "provisions

In this paper, a number of cases will be examined as a practical application of the GST legislation to property transactions. These cases will lead to a number of variations that will be discussed in the paper to show the different GST outcomes that can arise as a result of different arrangements.

The contents of this paper is as follows:

  • Overview
  • The margin scheme
  • Enterprise
  • Property
  • Joint venture or partnership
  • Conclusion


Property issues continue to be the biggest source of legal disputes in regards to the GST.

Author profile

Anthony Ince CTA
Tony has more than 20 years' experience in the indirect tax field, recently taking up a consulting role with RSM Bird Cameron in Perth. Most of his work is in the areas of GST, Payroll Tax and fuel Tax Credits. For several years he sat on the Western Australian State Revenue Liaison Committee as part of his role as Chairman of the Taxation Committee at the WA Chamber of Commerce and Industry. - Current at 22 March 2016
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