When purchasing a home or investment property, there are a number of costs that can take buyers by surprise. This is especially true for first-home buyers that might still be getting familiar with how the entire buying process works.
While there are a few costs that can be factored into your home loan, there are others that are required to be paid upfront and by a certain deadline – this includes the stamp duty for the residential property you have purchased.
Stamp duty is the mandatory tax you'll pay on any property purchase. How much it will cost depends on a number of factors, including where you live and what type of buyer you are. This calculator has all those factors covered, so you can see if you'll need to pay stamp duty.
It’s important to note the amount of stamp duty payable is subject to a few varying calculations, and the total cost is influenced by which state or territory you are purchasing in, the property’s value or purchase price, and if it will be your primary place of residence or as an investment.
Stamp duty can often be a substantial amount you need to pay – one to factor into the budget early on. Let’s break down what you are really paying for when it comes to stamp duty.
What is stamp duty?
Stamp duty, also known as transfer duty, is a mandatory tax that each state or territory government levies on new home buyers when they purchase a property which covers the cost of transferring a property’s legal title from one owner to another. The payment is due by a certain date which can depend on which state or territory the property is situated or purchased within.
How do you calculate stamp duty?
Stamp duty can vary depending on the state or territory you purchase the property in. Each region has its own sliding scale, which is subject to its own calculations.
The general rule is that the cheaper the property, the less tax you will need to pay.
Ultimately, the cost of stamp duty is determined by the dutiable value of your property, which is the price you paid for it, or its value on the market at the time of purchase.
What factors affect the cost of stamp duty?
Other than where the property is located and its dutiable value, there are a few other factors that determine the cost of stamp duty.
One factor that can impact the cost of duty payable is the purpose of the property, i.e. whether it is being purchased to live in or as an investment. As a general rule, owner-occupied homes will have lower stamp duty fees, and investment properties will have higher stamp duty tax.
There are certain exemptions and concessions that can apply when paying stamp duty.
If the property is handed over to a family member following a death or divorce, the new owner will not be required to pay stamp duty.
Under first-home owner grants and schemes, some states and territories exempt first home buyers from paying stamp duty on properties up to a certain value.
Concession rates are also available for pensioners, carers and farmers. However, these are all subject to the varying laws of each state and territory. Your residency status plays an important role, especially if you are a foreign purchaser.
There are also concession rates available for properties that are purchased off the plan, as the value of the property is calculated on the land value.
Do you understand all the factors? Ask an expert here
How do you pay stamp duty?
Stamp duty is usually paid at settlement. New homeowners are required to pay their stamp duty fee directly to the relevant revenue office. You can find out more by visiting your relevant state or territory’s website:
For further, more detailed information on how stamp duty applies in your state, it’s advised to gain the professional help of an expert. This could be a mortgage broker, solicitor or conveyancer who operates in the state you are buying in.
How accurate is this stamp duty calculator?
The Your Mortgage stamp duty calculator considers the dutiable value of the property, the state or territory it is purchased within, and the property type.
Data is sourced directly from the relevant state or territory office of state revenue to ensure the most accurate figures.
However, calculations should be used as a guide only. There are a number of other factors that can determine stamp duty costs. Laws and fees surrounding stamp duty are also open to legislative change by the state and territory governments.
Unfortunately, you generally cannot add stamp duty to your loan balance. This is because it’s an upfront cost that needs to be paid to the relevant revenue office. You can choose to pay for it out of your deposit funds, however, you should make sure this won’t impact your loan-to-value ratio (LVR). Most lenders require you to have an 80% LVR to avoid needing to pay for lenders mortgage insurance (LMI).
Stamp duty doesn’t automatically come out of your deposit, as it needs to be directly made to your state or territory’s relevant revenue office. However, as mentioned above, you can choose to pay for stamp duty out of your saved cash deposit if you want to.
As mentioned above, there are a few concessions and exemptions that can mean you avoid paying stamp duty. To briefly summarise, if you qualify under certain first-home buyer schemes, or if the property is handed over to a family member following a death or divorce, you won’t be required to pay stamp duty. Concessions can apply if you are a pensioner, carer, farmer, or if you purchased off the plan.
If you can’t afford stamp duty, you can either pay for it out of your deposit balance, or you might want to try to find a cheaper property. This is because, with a less expensive home, you will fall into a lower tax bracket and will therefore be charged less.
Yes, it does. As mentioned previously, a general rule is that owner-occupied homes will have cheaper stamp duty costs than investment properties.