House hunters will ultimately bear the cost of a NSW government decision to increase the registration fees for land and property, with developers saying they will pass the price hike on to home buyers.

The Baird government lifted the fees of registering land and property ahead of the sale of its land titles registry to boost its appeal to buyers. Some fees were doubled.

“The cost of registering a 150-lot strata plan, like a residential tower, has gone up from $22,000 to $43,000,” said Jane Fitzgerald, head of the NSW arm of the Property Council of Australia.

Developers warn the changes to land titles fees will lead to costs being passed on to consumers. Photo: David Paul Morris

“So if I’m a developer, I now have to pay twice as much and I’m simply going to put up the price of that apartment. It’s not helpful in an already unaffordable housing market.”

The Baird government is planning to spend the $700 million it expects for the registry on new sports facilities, angering lawyers, unions and property professionals who say the system is world-class, efficient and raking in $50 million a year.

The property industry’s warnings comes after Fairfax Media reported that a privatised land titles system would make title insurance a necessity and see surveyors and conveyancers pass increased insurance costs to consumers.

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Source: Domain.com.au