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Ultimate Buyer Stamp Duty Singapore Guide [2024]

Buyer Stamp Duty Singapore

Best Buyer Stamp Duty Singapore
Best Buyer Stamp Duty Singapore

In the bustling city-state of Singapore, the acquisition of properties, be it residential property or commercial/industrial property, is subject to a tax known as the Buyer Stamp Duty (BSD). This guide is designed to offer comprehensive information about the BSD, particularly for those considering the purchase of residential and non-residential properties alike.

The best things to know on what other taxes you need to pay aside from buyer stamp duty in Singapore are Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD), Goods and Services Tax (GST), Conveyance Fees, and Maintenance Fee.

It’s important to note that, for residential properties, the BSD is calculated based on the residential property value or the market value, whichever is higher. As of 27th April 2023, changes in the Buyer Stamp Duty rates have been introduced, significantly impacting the costs related to properties acquired from this date onwards.

Dive into our guide to better understand these changes and navigate Singapore’s real estate market with confidence.

Quick Summary

  • Best things to know on what other taxes you need to pay aside from buyer stamp duty in Singapore are Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD), Goods and Services Tax (GST), Conveyance Fees, and Maintenance Fee.
  • For buyer stamp duty in Singapore is the property’s value or its market value (whichever is higher), which directly influences the BSD amount, especially after the revised rates introduced on 27 Apr 2023.
  • The Buyer Stamp Duty in Singapore is a key factor to consider when purchasing property, as it significantly contributes to the overall cost of acquisition, especially following the rate revision in April 2023.

What Is Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore?

What Is Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore? - Buyer Stamp Duty Singapore
What Is Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore?

Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore is a tax imposed on all property purchases. It is levied on the actual price paid for the property or the market value of the property, whichever is higher. The purpose of BSD is to generate revenue for the government from the real estate sector. The tax rates vary and are based on a tiered system, taking into consideration the price or value. Paying this duty is a necessary step in the process of legally transferring property ownership.

Key Considerations

  • Property Value: The value or the price paid for it, whichever is higher, determines the amount of Buyer’s Stamp Duty you need to pay. The higher the property value, the higher the duty.
  • Payment Deadline: BSD must be paid within 14 days of signing the sales and purchase agreement if the property is in Singapore. For properties outside of Singapore, the deadline is 30 days after receiving the agreement in Singapore.
  • Remission Schemes: Certain remission schemes are available that can lower the BSD payable. These are typically eligible for specific situations, such as inter-family property transfers.
  • Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD): Apart from BSD, there might be an Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) to consider. This applies under certain circumstances (e.g., buying a second property) and can significantly increase the total stamp duty payable.
  • Property Type: The type of property (residential property or non-residential property) can influence the amount of stamp duty. Residences generally attract higher stamp duty rates than non-residential properties.
  • Calculating BSD: It is important to accurately calculate the amount payable to avoid any penalties. Online calculators and tools are available to assist with this.

How Much Is Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore?

The amount of Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore is determined by a tiered system, which works as follows:

  • The first S$180,000 of the property value attracts a 1% duty.
  • The next S$180,000 attracts a 2% duty.
  • The next S$640,000 attracts a 3% duty.
  • Any value above S$1 million attracts a 4% duty.

For instance, if you purchase a property valued at S$1.5 million, you’ll pay 1% on the first S$180,000 (S$1,800), 2% on the next S$180,000 (S$3,600), 3% on the next S$640,000 (S$19,200), and 4% on the remaining S$500,000 (S$20,000). That totals to S$44,600 in BSD. Remember, paying the BSD is an essential step in the legal transfer of property ownership in Singapore.

Calculate Your Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore

Calculating your Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore is straightforward with the tiered system provided. To simplify this process, we’ll break it down into steps:

  1. Determine the purchase price or market value (whichever is higher).
  2. Apply the tiered rates to the appropriate portions of your property’s price or value:
  • Apply a 1% duty on the first S$180,000.
  • Apply a 2% duty on the next S$180,000.
  • Apply a 3% duty on the next S$640,000.
  • Apply a 4% duty on any value above S$1 million.
  1. Sum up the amounts from each tier to get the total BSD.

Using this process, you can calculate the amount of Buyer’s Stamp Duty you would be required to pay when acquiring a property in Singapore. Ensure to factor this cost into your budget when planning to purchase real estate.

Changes to Buyer’s Stamp Duty in 2023 in Singapore

The Singapore government announced changes to the Buyer’s Stamp Duty framework, effective from 2023. While the previous system functioned on a tiered basis, the new changes introduce a more progressive tax structure. The revised duty threshold will start at a lower value of S$150,000, attracting a 1% duty. The subsequent S$150,000 will attract a 2% duty, followed by a 3% duty on the next S$650,000. Any value exceeding S$950,000 will now attract a higher duty of 5%.

These changes aim to make the tax system more equitable, targeting higher-end property purchases while reducing the burden on more modest transactions. As always, individuals planning to buy property in Singapore should factor in these significant changes to the BSD when budgeting for their purchase.

Transitional Provision for Buyer’s Stamp Duty Rates

For transactions that straddle the changes in Buyer’s Stamp Duty rates, the Singapore government has instituted a transitional provision. This provision applies to buyers who have been given an Option to Purchase (OTP) before the date of the change, but have not yet executed it. In such scenarios, buyers will be subject to the old BSD rates as long as they exercise the OTP, or sign a Sale and Purchase Agreement (whichever is applicable), within 14 days after the date of the change.

This transitional provision ensures a smooth transition and alleviates potential financial burdens for buyers caught in the changeover period. Understanding this provision is crucial for property buyers in Singapore to accurately calculate their BSD and avoid unexpected costs.

Previous Buyer’s Stamp Duty Rates (on or Before 14 February 2023)

The previous Buyer’s Stamp Duty rates that were in effect on or before 14 February 2023 are as follows:

  • The first S$180,000 of the property value was subject to a 1% duty.
  • The next S$180,000 was subject to a 2% duty.
  • The next S$640,000 was subject to a 3% duty.
  • Any value above S$1 million was subject to a 4% duty.

These rates were applicable to all property purchases in Singapore, regardless of the type or location of the property. It’s important to understand these previous rates as they provide a clear comparison to the changes that have been implemented since 2023.

Taxes Aside from Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore

When purchasing property in Singapore, there are additional taxes and fees beyond the Buyer’s Stamp Duty that you need to be aware of. These include:

1. Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD)

This is an additional tax imposed on certain categories of property buyers. Singapore Citizens buying their second and subsequent properties, Singapore Permanent Residents buying any property, and foreigners buying any property in Singapore are all subject to ABSD. The rates vary depending on the buyer’s residency status and the number of properties they already own.

2. Goods and Services Tax (GST)

This is a 7% tax on the purchase of new properties from a developer. It’s important to note that GST does not apply to the purchase of sub-sale properties or properties bought from a resale market.

3. Conveyance Fees

These are fees payable to the lawyer who assists with the legal process of transferring the property. The fee can vary based on the property price and the complexity of the transaction.

4. Maintenance Fee

This is a monthly fee payable to the management corporation of a condominium or private apartment. The fee is used for cleaning, security, and maintenance of shared areas, such as swimming pools, gyms, BBQ pits, and more. The amount can vary depending on the share value of the unit in the property.

Remember, it’s crucial to be aware of all the costs involved in the property transaction to avoid any unexpected surprises. Do your due diligence and consult with a real estate professional or lawyer if in doubt.

Exemptions on Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore

In specific scenarios, property buyers in Singapore may be exempt from paying the Buyer’s Stamp Duty. One such case is if the property is transferred as a gift to your spouse, child, or grandchild, where no monetary consideration is involved. Another exemption occurs when the property is transferred due to inheritance, as a result of the previous owner’s death.

In case of a property transfer between two married parties due to divorce, the BSD may be remitted if specific conditions are met. This includes scenarios where the marital home is transferred to either spouse or their children as part of the divorce settlement.

Keep in mind that although there may be cases where you are exempt from paying BSD, you will still need to file the necessary documents to IRAS in all these instances to qualify for the exemption. It is always advised to seek professional advice to help you navigate the complexities of these exemptions.

Paying the Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore

The payment of the Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore is typically due within 14 days from the date of execution for signed documents in Singapore, or 30 days after receipt in Singapore for documents signed overseas. The payment and submission of documents can be done electronically through the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) e-Stamping Portal.

To make your payment, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the IRAS e-Stamping Portal.
  2. Select “Pay Stamp Duty”.
  3. Fill in the required details such as property type, price, and date of agreement.
  4. Review the calculated stamp duty and proceed to payment.
  5. Choose your preferred mode of payment. IRAS accepts payment via GIRO, eNETS, or cheque.

Remember to keep a printed or electronic copy of the Stamp Certificate as it serves as proof of payment of your BSD. In the event of late payments, a penalty could be imposed by the authorities, so ensure that your duty is paid promptly and correctly. If you find the process complex, consider seeking help from a lawyer or real estate professional to guide you through.

Can I Pay My Buyer’s Stamp Duty Using CPF?

Yes, in Singapore, your Central Provident Fund (CPF) savings can be used to pay for your Buyer’s Stamp Duty. However, the use of CPF for such payments is subject to certain conditions. It’s essential to ensure your CPF account has sufficient balance to cover the BSD and other related expenses such as legal fees. Remember, the amount you can withdraw from your CPF savings to buy a property depends on the valuation limit and the withdrawal limit set by the CPF Board.

Additionally, it’s crucial to understand that using your CPF savings for the payment of BSD means less funds available for your retirement. Consulting with a finance professional or a property lawyer can offer more insights tailored to your specific circumstances.

Paying Late the Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore

If you’re late in paying your BSD in Singapore, you may face penalties from the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS). A late payment penalty of 5% on the unpaid duty is typically levied if the duty is not paid by the due date. If the duty remains unpaid 14 days after the initial penalty, an additional 1% penalty may be imposed for each completed month that the duty remains unpaid, up to a maximum of 12% of the unpaid duty.

It’s therefore essential to ensure that you pay your BSD on time to avoid these additional costs. If you’re uncertain about the process or timelines, consider seeking advice from a real estate professional or a property lawyer to ensure you meet all necessary requirements.

Buyer Stamp Duty Singapore

Whether you’re a prospective buyer for commercial or industrial properties, or looking to invest in a subsequent residential property, it is crucial to understand the various costs involved, including the conveyance duties for buyers. Apart from the purchase price, you need to account for the BSD, which is calculated based on the property’s purchase price or market value, whichever is earlier.

Equity interest in a property is also subject to BSD, affecting not just property owners but also shareholders with significant holdings. Always remember to make timely payments to avoid penalties and ensure a smoother property transaction. When in doubt, seek professional advice to navigate the complexities of property transactions in Singapore.

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Frequently Asked Questions

If you have any questions about Buyer Stamp Duty Singapore, you can refer to the frequently asked questions (FAQ) below:

What are the best things to know on what other taxes you need to pay aside from buyer stamp duty in Singapore?

The best things to know on what other taxes you need to pay aside from buyer stamp duty in Singapore are Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD), Goods and Services Tax (GST), Conveyance Fees, and Maintenance Fee.

What is the buyer Stamp Duty in Singapore?

Aside from Buyer’s Stamp Duty in Singapore, What Other Taxes Do I Need to Pay?
Buyer profile ABSD payable (on or after 27 April 2023)
Singapore Permanent Residents (PR) buying their first property 5% (no change)
Singapore PR buying a second property 30%
Singapore PR buying third and subsequent properties 35%

How much is Stamp Duty for foreign buyers in Singapore?

On 26 April 2023, the Additional Buyers Stamp Duty (ABSD) payable by non-residents in Singapore increased from 30% to 60%.

How much is the Stamp Duty in Singapore?

How to calculate stamp duty? First, determine your nationality and the total sum you will be paying for your property. If you are a Singaporean, you pay 1% for the first $180,000, 2% for the next $180,000, 3% for the next $640,000, and 4% for the remaining amount.

Is there seller Stamp Duty in Singapore?

Buyer Stamp Duty and Seller Stamp Duty is payable by both Buyer and Seller to the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (“IRAS”) for the sale and purchase of a property transaction.

Is the Buyer’s Stamp Duty applicable for my first residential property purchase in Singapore?

Yes, the Buyer’s Stamp Duty (BSD) applies to all residential property purchases in Singapore, including your first one. The BSD is calculated based on the purchase price or the market value of the property, whichever is higher. However, the rates may vary, and for your first residential property, you may enjoy lower rates compared to subsequent properties. Always consult a professional or the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) for accurate information on your specific situation.

What happens if I don’t have sufficient funds in my CPF to cover the Buyer’s Stamp Duty (BSD)?

If your Central Provident Fund (CPF) savings are insufficient to cover the cost of your Buyer’s Stamp Duty (BSD), you will need to pay the balance in cash. It’s crucial to plan your finances carefully when purchasing property to ensure that all costs, including the BSD, can be comfortably covered.

Is the Buyer’s Stamp Duty (BSD) applicable to commercial properties as well?

Yes, the Buyer’s Stamp Duty (BSD) applies to all property purchases in Singapore, whether they are residential or commercial. The BSD is calculated based on the purchase price or the market value of the property, whichever is higher.

Are there any penalties for late payment of Buyer’s Stamp Duty (BSD)?

Yes, if your Buyer’s Stamp Duty (BSD) is not paid by the due date, the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) may impose a late payment penalty. This is typically 5% of the unpaid duty. If the duty remains unpaid 14 days after the initial penalty, an additional 1% penalty may be imposed for each completed month that the duty remains unpaid, up to a maximum of 12% of the unpaid duty.

Can I get an exemption from paying the Buyer’s Stamp Duty in any circumstances?

There are few circumstances under which you may be exempt from paying the Buyer’s Stamp Duty, such as if the property is being transferred as a gift to your spouse, child or grandchild, or due to inheritance. Any exemptions are subject to the approval of the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS), and you will need to submit the necessary documents to qualify.

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