One of the oldest taxes associated with English law is the stamp duty which has been in effect for several hundred years. This is usually associated with documents of some kind. In the past this was to assure officials that that proper duty was paid out. Nowadays, there is no need for physical stamps to be used.
Another kind of transaction that takes place which officials have to calculate stamp duty is the transfer of property. It occurs when property is purchased, such as a new house. Since there is transfer of ownership, from one party to another, a tax is paid. The buyer is the one responsible for this duty.
In Australia, this is not associated with the federal government, but is levied at the local level in all states and territories. The duty is gathered by the various states that are responsible for collection. There are some variations in how the duty is collected between states, and how the tax is actually calculated. For example, a house that is purchased for $500,000 in one state will not necessarily draw the same amount of stamp duty as that of a similar home bought in another state.
There are also concessions that can be added to any property that is purchased depending on the conditions and rules that are used in the state of ownership. These concessions may include special instances on the property, including whether the buyer has never purchased a home before or if the property was not valued significantly enough to warrant duty.
Similarities do exist how between states, although as mentioned previously, there are variations that exist as well. Across the entire continent of Australia, the method used to calculate stamp duty is pretty similar. The amount that has to be paid on any property depends on the value. If the value increases, the percentage rate goes up as well.
There is a minimum level for each state, so property values under this amount are not subject to stamp duty when they are sold. The law was passed to help those persons in the low income bracket not to be punished with a tax they can’t pay. The upper limit exists as well, where the applied rate doesn’t change. It is usually set at about $1,000,000, and properties which exceed this value can be taxed at levels more than 5%.
The Office of State Revenue is the department in each territory that is the one who must collect the tax on a transaction. Since technology has advanced so much in the last decade, each of these offices now has their own website with detailed information regarding hot to calculate stamp duty. This makes it easier for customers to find out the information they need regarding the fees owed on their transaction.
There are times when even the information available on the website will simply not be enough for some homeowners, and in that case, a consultation with a mortgage broker should work. A qualified expert in this area should be able to answer any questions and provide further information about any legal issues. They are typically up to speed on all of the latest changes regarding stamp duty and are looked upon as experts in their field.
Calculate your stamp duty using one of our free online stamp duty calculators:
Stamp Duty Calculator NSW (New South Wales)
Stamp Duty Calculator WA (Western Australia)
Stamp Duty Calculator SA (South Australia)
Stamp Duty Calculator ACT (Australia Capital Territory)
Stamp Duty Calculator NT (Northern Territory)