The Balancing Act: An Inoffensive Budget? 

May 2017 | Federal Budget

The 2017-18 Federal Budget was notable for its apparent 'practical' approach to tackling issues that matter to Australians. 

There's a famous quote from John Lydgate that goes something like this: "You can please some of the people al of the time; you can please all people some of the time; but you can't please all people all of the time."

In his 2017-18 Federal Budget, Treasurer Scott Morrison has outlined what he's called a practical budget and it seems designed to please as many people as possible while – on the surface at least. Budget Night unveiled a series of measures that tackle the areas in focus for many Australians, such as:

  • Gaps in health care
  • First home ownership
  • Foreign workers and foreign property ownership, 
  • Investment
  • Bank Accountability. 

There's also a well-placed $75 billion sugar hit in the form of funding for infrastructure projects.  Whilst some are saying it is a budget without the ideology of previous Coalition budgets, there are still some stings

So how will the budget impact you? 

  • Extension of the $20,000 immediate deduction until 30 June 2018 
  • Contractors in the courier and cleaning industries face greater compliance 
  • Access to small business CGT concessions tightened
  • Banks slugged with 'major bank levy'


  • Super concessions for over 65s to downsize – up to $300,000 per member
  • The ability for would-be first home owners to salary sacrifice into super to save a deposit

  • An array of housing affordability measures including: a CGT discount increase to 60% for investments in affordable housing, and Managed Investment Trust investment opportunities in affordable housing
  • Deductibility of investment property travel costs to end and restrictions on depreciation deductions 
  • A series of restrictions on foreign property investments 

Individuals & Families
  • Medicare levy increase to 2.5% from 1 July 2019
  • Help with energy bills for some social security recipients
  • Demerit system for jobseekers
  • Budget repair levy ends June 30, 2017
Overall the 2017-18 Budget will not offend anyone (except perhaps the banks) and there are plenty of giveaways.  The only danger is the level of optimism in the economic projections in a climate of uncertainty.

What's in the budget?

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This article is provided for information purposes only and correct at the time of publication. It should not be used in place of advice from your accountant. Please contact us on 02 9957 4033 to discuss your specific circumstances.

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