What is SDLT?

SDLT is a self-assessed tax which means that it would be your responsibility, as a taxpayer, to calculate the tax, complete the necessary SDLT Land Transaction Return and pay any tax which is due.

SDLT is payable when you are purchasing or transferring property or an interest in land in the UK and where the price paid is higher than the thresholds below.  The most common examples of when SDLT is payable is by a purchaser buying a house or creating a lease.  However, there are some exemptions or relief for acquisitions or transfer of specific property e.g. in specified disadvantaged areas; to a charity; a gift of land etc. and we would be able to advise you on this if appropriate.

When is SDLT paid?

As a purchaser, you have 30 days to file the SDLT Return following the “effective date” i.e. the completion date or when the contract has been substantially performed.  There are penalties for any late payments.

How much tax is payable?

The rates for SDLT are set annually and the rates vary depending on the type of property it is.  The current tax rates and thresholds for residential properties (it is different for non-residential and mixed properties) are as follows:-

Click here to view table.

Please note that the 15% rate of SDLT is applicable to both UK companies and offshore companies buying residential property in the UK.

When is HMRC notified and how is the tax paid?

It is very common for purchasers to employ a solicitor to complete the SDLT Return and arrange for the tax to be paid and we would be happy to assist with the process.  The SDLT Return can be completed in paper form by more commonly it is done online.  Once the SDLT Return has been submitted the tax must be paid within 30 days.  Payments can be made in a number of ways e.g. by post, online or at the Post Office.

Once HMRC has processed the SDLT Return a certificate is sent to confirm payment and this must be sent to the Land Register to update the details of the title to the property.