Stamp Duty is a Government Property Tax that becomes payable when a residential property is purchased. If you do not own any other property anywhere in the World, then your purchase will become subject to stamp duty payable within 30 days of completion of your purchase at the following rates:
£0 – £125,000 – nil rate
£125,001 – £250,000 – 2%
£250,001 – £ 925,000 – 5%
£925,000 – £1.5m – 10%
£1.5m + – 12%
From 1st April 2016, if you already own a property anywhere else in the World or you are purchasing a ‘buy to let’, property then higher rates of Stamp Duty will apply as follows:
£ 0 – £125,000 – 3%
£125,001 – £250,000 – 5%
£250,000 – £925, 000 – 8%
£925,000 – £1.5m – 13%
£1.5m + – 15%
There are some exemptions and these include purchases of a non-residential or mixed use property, transactions where the property price is less than £40,000 and the purchase of caravans, houseboat and mobile homes.
If you are simultaneously selling your main residence and buying a new main residence then even if you own another property the higher rate of stamp duty will not be applicable. If you do not complete the sale of your existing main residence and purchase of your new main residence at the same time, then you will have to pay the stamp duty at the higher rate on completion of your purchase and then provided you sell your old main residence within a 3 year period then you may be able to reclaim the difference between the lower and higher rates.
If you are purchasing jointly, even if one of you owns another property and the other purchaser does not, you will still qualify for payment of Stamp Duty at the higher rate. There are also certain considerations to be taken into account if you are a Partner holding property on behalf of a partnership or if you are a Trustee.
Further information can be provided from Miller Parris as to when the higher rates of Stamp Duty would be payable.