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A guide to stamp duty land tax

Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) must be paid when you buy property or land over a certain price within the United Kingdom. The threshold for Stamp Duty Land Tax currently stands at £125,000 for a residential property and £150,000 for non-residential land or property.

When purchasing a property, land ownership is transferred to you from the previous owner, and that needs to be recognised by a legal and official registration. This recognition is in the form of a Certificate of Land Ownership from the HMRC, of which you can only receive on receipt of the payment of stamp duty.

How much do you pay?

The amount that you pay is purely based on the type of property or land, whether it is residential, non-residential or mixed-use. The exact amount of SDLT that you pay can be calculated by using the HM Revenue and Customs’ Stamp Duty Land Tax calculator. SDLT is paid when you:

  • Buy a property through a shared ownership scheme
  • Are transferred land or property in exchange for payment
  • Buy a new or existing leasehold
  • Buy a freehold property

Paying SDLT

Stamp Duty Land Tax is usually paid on the total price of the property or land that you purchase. However, sometimes it can include another payment based on things such as goods, release from a debt, transfer of a debt or works and services.

An SDLT return must be sent to HMRC for the tax to be paid within 30 days of completing the sale of your property or land. A typical method for paying the tax would be for your solicitor, agent or conveyancer to file the return and make the payment on your behalf, adding the cost onto their fees. Although this is a popular way of paying the tax, you can file the return and pay the tax yourself. The rates that are paid on the tax are based on the value of the property, lease premium or transfer value.

The SDLT rates for residential properties are:

  • Up to £125,000 = 0%
  • The next £125,000 (between £125,001 and £250,000) = 2%
  • The next £675,000 (between £250,001 and £925,000) = 5%
  • The next £575,000 (between £925,001 and £1.5m) = 10%
  • The remaining amount (above £1.5m) = 12%

The SDLT rates for non-residential and mixed use land and properties are:

  • Up to £150,000 = 0%
  • The next £100,000 (between £150,001 to £250,000) = 2%
  • The remaining amount (above £250,000) = 5%

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