1. For the sale and purchase of the property, which is the material date to be considered for this purpose of determining seller's stamp duty (SSD) – is it the date of contract or date of transfer or date of possession of the property?
The material date of acquisition or disposal is the date on which the contract is made rather than the date of transfer or date of possession of the property. Where there is an Option to Purchase, the material date shall be the date when the Option is exercised. In the case of a direct sale of an uncompleted property by the developer where the Sale & Purchase Agreement constitutes the first contract between the developer and the Original Purchaser, the date of acquisition shall be the date of the Sale & Purchase Agreement between the developer and the Original Purchaser. Should the Original Purchaser subsequently sell the property to the Sub-Purchaser, the subsequent date of acquisition or disposal shall be the date when the Option to Purchase is exercised by the Sub-Purchaser.
2. When must seller's stamp duty (SSD) be paid?
SSD must be paid within 14 days of execution of the Contract or Agreement (that is, the date the Option to Purchase is exercised, or date of signing the Sale and Purchase Agreement if the date of exercise of Option is not available). Where the Contract or Agreement is executed overseas, SSD must be paid within 30 days from the date of receipt of the Contract or Agreement in Singapore.
3. Can SSD be deferred or paid by instalments?
No, stamp duty must be paid in full for the Agreement to be stamped.
4. As a buyer of a residential property, do I have to ensure that the seller pays the SSD if he is liable?
If the seller is liable but fails to pay SSD, the Agreement between you and the seller is considered as not duly stamped even though you have paid the buyer's stamp duty. Hence it is in your interest to ensure that the seller pays the SSD.
5. How do I know if the seller is liable to pay SSD?
If the seller has bought the residential property on or after 20 February 2010 and sold it within a short duration of up to 4 years from the date of purchase, there is a chance that he may have to pay SSD. In the process of conveyancing, your lawyer may check with the seller's lawyer or make a search on the property to ascertain the date of purchase by the seller. Whether the seller is liable for SSD and the amount of SSD payable would depend on the date of purchase and the date of sale.
6. As a buyer, how do I ensure that the SSD is duly paid?
You may ask for a copy of the stamp certificate from the seller's lawyer as proof that SSD has been paid. If the seller has not paid the SSD by the sale completion date, it may be in your interest to ask your lawyer to withhold the stamp duty amount payable by the seller plus any penalty chargeable.
7. Does SSD apply if an apartment was given to me (i.e. transferred by way of a gift) and I sell the apartment within a year?
Yes, if the apartment was given to you on or after 20 February 2010.
8. If I bought an apartment after 14 Jan 2011 and the entire block was collectively sold in an enbloc sale within 4 years, would I be liable to pay SSD even if I had not given my consent to the sale?
Yes, you are liable to SSD if any collective sale is carried out within 4 years from the date of acquisition of your apartment. This is notwithstanding that you have not consented to the sale or have objected to the sale. As a buyer of a residential development with enbloc sale potential, you would have to make a very deliberate decision taking into account that you would have to pay SSD if there is any collective sale within 4 years from the date of your purchase.
9. I have inherited a house from a deceased relative on 1 Apr 2010. Does SSD apply to me if I sell it within a year?
If the deceased acquired the house before 20 February 2010, you would not need to pay SSD upon disposal. As the deceased acquired the house after 20 February 2010, you would have to pay SSD when you dispose of the house within a year of the acquisition of the property by the deceased.
10. I became the co-owner of my parents' HDB flat after my parents and I did a Transfer to include my name as one of the 3 owners of equal shares on 15 January 2011. We decide to sell the HDB flat 6 months later. Does SSD apply to us when we sell the flat?
Yes, as you have acquired the 1/3 share in the HDB flat after 14 January 2011, you would have to pay SSD when the HDB flat is sold within the 4 years' holding period.
11. Does SSD apply to HDB residential flats?
HDB flats are not specifically exempted from SSD. However the vast majority of HDB owners will not be affected by SSD as they are required to occupy the HDB flats for 5 years (i.e. the Minimum Occupation Period) before the property can be sold or disposed of.
12.How is SSD computed?
SSD is computed according to the following rates, on the consideration or the market value of the property, whichever is higher: -
| Up to 1 year
||More than 1 year and up to 2 years
|| More than 2 years and up to 3 years
|| More than 3 years and up to 4 years
|Between 20 February 2010 and 29 August 2010*
||1% on 1st $180,000
2% on next $180,000
3% on remainder
|Between 30 August 2010 and 13 January 2011*
||1% on 1st $180,000
2% on next $180,000
3% on remainder
|0.67% on 1st $180,000
1.33% on next $180,000
2% on remainder
|0.33% on 1st $180,000
0.67% on next $180,000
1% on remainder
|On or after 14 January 2011+
||16% of the consideration or market value whichever is higher
||12% of the consideration or market value whichever is higher
||8% of the consideration or market value whichever is higher
||4% of the consideration or market value whichever is higher
* The consideration or value has to be rounded up to the nearest $100 before applying the rate.
+ SSD payable to be rounded down to the nearest dollar.
You may use the stamp duty calculator to determine the stamp duty payable.
13.How do I pay SSD?
Payment of Seller’s Stamp Duty can be done via the e-Stamping website.
You can use the form ‘Sale and Purchase of Immovable Property (Ad Valorem Seller’s Stamp Duty)’ available at the website.
To access this form, you can click on the e-Stamping link and locate the form under the header ‘Sale & Purchase of Immovable Properties’.
14. Do all sellers need to fill up the SSD declaration form upon disposing their residential properties?
Yes, all sellers of residential properties are required to complete the "Seller's Stamp Duty for Residential Properties Declaration Form" whether or not they are liable to pay SSD.
15. If I have bought 4 old houses, demolished them and erected new housing units for sale, would I be exempted from SSD if I sell them within the 4 years holding period?
Licensed developers are exempted from SSD. Therefore, there is no requirement for them to apply for exemption. Non-licensed housing developers may apply for SSD remission only if they are registered companies or businesses, and lawfully carrying on the business of housing development. But if you are an individual redeveloping the residential properties, the exemption or remission from SSD does not apply to you.
Housing development refers to the building of new housing accommodation or total demolition of existing buildings and rebuilding of new housing accommodation. Developers who alter, repair, do additions to existing buildings or partially demolish and rebuild the residential properties will be liable to pay SSD when they sell these properties within the 4 years holding period.
16. Both my ex-spouse and I had purchased a residential property on 21 January 2011. The Court had ordered for the residential property to be sold in the open market. Are we liable for SSD if we sell it within the 4 years holding period?
Yes, you will be liable to pay SSD if the property is sold within the 4 years holding period. However, if the Court had ordered for the property to be transferred to you, SSD is remitted. SSD will continue to be payable if you subsequently sell it within the 4 years holding period.