The Ultimate Guide to Stamp Duty for Tenants in the UK

The Ultimate Guide to Stamp Duty for Tenants in the UK

Do You Have to Pay Tax?

When renting a residential property in the UK, the tenant must pay Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) if the rent is over a certain rental amount in England and Northern Ireland, Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) in Scotland, or Land Transaction Tax (LTT) in Wales (as of 1st April 2018).

The value thresholds are £125,000 in England and Northern Ireland, £145,000 in Scotland, and £180,000 in Wales (as of 1st April 2018).

What you need to know when renting in the UK

What you need to know when renting in the UK

For those of you considering relocating to the UK, this provides information about the UK rental market, types of housing available, and utility and media information.

Please note that there is a lot of legislation involved in the UK lettings market, most of which is very out of date and inadequate, so be sure to speak to a property expert before you sign a tenancy agreement or hand over any money. Our Front Office Consultants and Personal Coordinators have a two-step validation process to make sure all tenancy agreements are legal and suitable for the tenant

Dubai housing fee for expatriates

Every expatriate renting and/or owning a property in Dubai has to pay housing fee.

The housing fee is collected by Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa) on behalf of Dubai Municipality and the fee is applicable for all expatriates resident accounts in Dubai, according to Dewa.

As per directive of the government of Dubai, the housing fee is charged to an account on the basis of 5 per cent of the annual rent amount (for tenants), or 0.5 per cent of the property purchase price (for expatriate owners residing in their properties).

How to deal with a (difficult) letting agent

How to deal with a (difficult) letting agent

There are many times when we are in need of a good letting agent, but not all letting agents provide the same level of service, so it will be up to you to decide whether it is worth your time dealing with the difficult ones. You may not have a choice depending on the size of the market you’re going for, but for the most part you should keep a few things in mind no matter what agent you’re working with:

Top tips for property viewing

Top tips for property viewing

Finding your new home to buy can be fraught with pitfalls, especially if you are a first-time buyer or are not from the country. However, if you do a little homework and know what to look for in advance of viewings, you will stand a much better chance of finding a suitable property without the headaches after you move in.

As part of a relocation package with Celsium, we will always have your best interests at heart, but here are a few pointers to get you moving in the right direction.

Super suggestions for selling swiftly

Super suggestions for selling swiftly

Selling your house can, unfortunately, be a long and drawn out process. However, if you take a little time and effort to prepare for viewings in advance of the property going on the market and of any planned viewings, you will stand a much better chance of achieving a sale quickly.

Here are a few pointers to get you moving in the right direction.

How can a landlord end my tenancy?

How can a landlord end my tenancy?

Have you ever wondered how a landlord can end your tenancy? Well, if your landlord wishes to end the tenancy, they must follow strict procedures, depending on the type of tenancy agreement you have and the terms of it. If they don’t, they may be guilty of illegally evicting or harassing you.

What to consider when renting serviced accommodation in Latin America

What to consider when renting serviced accommodation in Latin America

Serviced apartments are a fantastic alternative to hotels for relocation assignees around the world, offering tangible benefits to both the employee and the employer.

You may have seen our recent post about the advantages of using serviced accommodation when relocating and travelling. 

Today, Leo Capotorto GMS, Director of Global Business Development for Avenida Suites, based in Florida, tells us about their serviced accommodation provision in the Latin American (LATAM) region and what to bear in mind when renting an apartment.

Where can you afford to live?

Where can you afford to live?

Official figures have measured new record highs (I know, it is hard to believe we are hearing this again...) for average house prices in the UK, with growth of 6.1% over the past year. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) measured a jump of £1,000 in the typical cost of a property between August and September. It left the average price at a new peak of £286,000.

This may be "good news" for the property industry, but it's not so great for home buyers, especially first-time buyers who traditionally drive the market.

Right to rent checks - what's it all about?

There's been quite a bit of controversy surrounding the introduction of the right to rent checks, but whether or not you like the idea, the Government is forging ahead with it following what is claimed to be a rather unfruitful pilot of the scheme in the West Midlands.

Right to rent checks have been introduced as part of the government’s ongoing reforms to the immigration system and from 1 February 2016, all private landlords in England will have to make right to rent checks. This means checking that tenants have the right to be in the UK. It doesn't say a lot for the Border Agency, does it?

What documents does a non-UK resident need to rent a house in the UK?

In this post, we'll take a look at what documentation an assignee to the UK (a non-UK resident) will need to provide in order to support an application to rent a residential property in the UK.

So, you've made a decision on a property and managed to get your offer accepted by the landlord.

What next?

Tax charges for non-resident owners of UK property

With effect from 6 April 2015, a new capital gains tax charge has been introduced which is aimed at UK non-residents disposing of UK residential property; it specifically applies to non-resident individuals, certain companies and trustees.

The amount of capital gains tax payable on disposal of UK residential property is based on the proportion of the gain arising after 5 April 2015, calculated using time apportionment or "re-basing".

If you are non-UK resident and you own UK residential property, it is prudent to obtain a valuation of your property as close to April 2015 as possible, as this will give you flexibility on a future disposal of the property.

Where a capital gains tax charge applies, the rates of tax are the standard rates applying, i.e.

  • Individuals will pay either 18% or 28% depending on their levels of total income and gains in the year;
  • Companies will pay 20% but will also be subject to annual tax on enveloped dwellings (ATED);
  • Trustees will pay a standard rate of 28%.

For individuals making a disposal, it may be possible to claim principal private residence relief (PPR) providing the requirements of HMRC’s occupancy test can be satisfied. This requires the owner/co-owner to have occupied the property for a minimum of 90 individual nights.

Alternatively, where a disposal is by a company, ATED charges will apply in preference to these charges.


What action should you take?

These rules are particularly complex because they interact with the statutory residence test which was introduced with effect from 6 April 2013.

  • You should check your UK residence position in accordance with the statutory residence test;
  • If you are non-UK resident but your spouse is UK resident, you may not be affected by the new CGT rules but should seek professional advice to clarify your position;
  • If you dispose of UK property at a time when you are non-UK resident, you must notify HMRC of the disposal within 30 days of completion. All property disposals must be notified to HMRC irrespective of whether or not a tax liability arises;
  • If you do not file a self assessment on an annual basis, you should pay the tax due within 30 days of completion;
  • If you submit annual self assessments the tax can be paid on your normal due date provided this is approved in advance by HMRC.

Note that any losses made on disposal can be offset against gains made on the disposal of other properties. If you subsequently become resident in the UK, ring-fenced losses from an earlier period of non-UK residence will be available to offset as general losses against other chargeable gains.

Rebasing (whereby the tax payable is based on gains for the period after 6th April 2015) is not available to individuals who purchase UK property whilst they are non-UK resident and subsequently sell the property once they become resident in the UK.

If you are considering a UK property disposal at a time when you are non-UK resident, or you are considering returning to the UK and will wish to dispose of UK property, we recommend you take advice as the correct timing can reduce your liabilities.

If you would like to discuss any aspect of property tax, please get in touch with us using our contact page.


Source: (Lesley Stalker, RJP Accountants & Tax Advisors)