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What Is the Stamp Duty Land Tax?

If you’re planning on buying property in England and Northern Ireland, expect to pay a tax for it. The Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) applies for residential properties over £125,000. There’s also a tax for non-residential properties and land that cost at least £150,000.

If you want to sell your property online, it’s a good idea to find out how these taxes may apply to your potential buyers. Find out more about SDLT payments and the different rules around this tax.

Who Has to Pay?

In general, anyone who buys properties over the current threshold has to pay the tax. That includes:

buyers for freehold properties
shared ownership scheme property buyers
buyers of a leasehold (new or existing)
anyone who is taking on a mortgage or buying a share in a house
Exceptions apply if you’re buying your first home. You may pay less or no tax if any of the following apply:
the property purchase price is £500,00 or less
property purchase was completed on or after November 22, 2017
you or any of your co-owners are first-time buyers

How Much Is Your SDLT?

Your potential payments depend on many factors, such as whether the property is residential or non-residential. If you’re buying a mixed-use property or you’re a first-time buyer, it will affect the final cost. But you can use the SDLT calculator from HM Revenue and Customs here.

You may also need to pay considerations for:

works or services
release from a debt
goods
a transfer of debt, like in the case of outstanding mortgages

When and How to Pay SDLT

The SDLT return and payment is due to HMRC within 14 days of the completion of the sale. If you have a solicitor or conveyancer, they’ll typically file this return and tax payment on your behalf. They’ll also claim reliefs if you’re eligible for any.

The SDLT form and payment aren’t required for certain situations, such as:

the property is left to you in a will
the property is transferred to you as a result of divorce or civil partnership dissolution
no payment or money changed hands for the property or land transfer

You can check out the full list of exemptions on the official UK SDLT webpage. However, most online property sales will involve paying this tax. So it’s a good idea to be aware the potential fees, even from a seller’s standpoint.

Final Note About the Tax

Failure to file the return and remit payment for the SDLT tax can result in penalties and interests. Remember, buyers only have 14 days to complete this. So if you’re planning to buy property, know in advance if your agent or solicitor will take care of this for you.