Stamp Duty

ResourcesTax Matters ⎬ Stamp Duty


• What is Stamp Duty
• Who is to pay Stamp Duty
• Sale & Purchase of property
• Seller Stamp Duty
• Transfer of shares by way of sale or gift
• Lease / Tenancy of property
• Mortgage
• Stamp Duty Calculator
• Penalties for Late or Insufficient Stamping
• Payment Modes
• Stamping location


What is Stamp Duty
Stamp duty is not a tax on transactions. It is a tax on executed documents relating to properties or interest in properties. It is levied on the specific documents under the Stamp Duties Act. If the agreement is verbal and no document is signed for that agreement, then no stamp duty is payable. Liability arises once the document is executed. Hence, even if the transaction has been aborted, stamp duty is still payable.Stamp duty is payable on these documents:

• Deed of conveyance;
• Lease/Tenancy Agreement;
• Mortage Agreement;
• Sale and Purchase Agreement;
• Transfer of shares by way of sale or gift;
• Transfer or Assignment.

Once a document is signed, stamp duty must be paid within:
14 days from the date signed if the document is signed in Singapore.
30 days from date first received in Singapore if the document is signed overseas.

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Who is to pay Stamp Duty
Generally, the purchaser, the tenant or mortgagor (borrower) pays stamp duty. Rule may be varied by special agreement between parties.

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Sale & Purchase of property or Transfer of property by way of gift
All purchasers are required to pay stamp duty for documents executed for a sale and purchase of property. Stamp duty will be computed on the purchase price or market value of the property (whichever is the higher amount) as at the date of signing of the document.

The rate is as follow:
Every $100 or part thereof of the first $180,000 $1
Every $100 or part thereof of the next $180,000 $2
Every $100 or part thereof of the remainder $3

Example 1:
Property purchased at $1 million

first $180,000 x 1% = $1,800
second $180,000 x 2% = $3,600
remaining $640,000 x 3% = $19,200
Stamp duty payable = $24,600
Example 2:
Shortcut method for property purchase > $360,000
Property purchased at $1 million
= (purchase price x 3%) – $5,400
= ( $1,000,000 x 3% ) – $5,400
= $30,000 – $5,400
= $24,600
Example 3:
Shortcut method for property purchase < $360,000
Property purchased at $350,000
= (purchase price x 2%) – $1,800
= ( $350,000 x 2% ) – $1,800
= $7,000 – $1,800
= $5,200

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Seller Stamp Duty (SSD)
Residential properties bought or acquired between 20 February 2010 and 29 August 2010 and sold within 1 year of acquisition. SSD is computed based on the same rates as the buyer’s stamp duty.

Note: value has to be rounded up to the nearest $100 before applying the rate, SSD payable to be rounded down to the nearest dollar.

Example 1:
Date of purchase : 29 August 2010
Date of sale : 27 August 2011
Sold at : $1,000,000
Holding Period : 1 year
= (sale price x 3%) – $5,400
= ( $1,00,000 x 3% ) – $5,400
= $30,000 – $5,400
= $24,600

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Residential properties bought or acquired between 30 August 2010 and 13 January 2011 and sold within 3 years of acquisition.

SSD rate is as follow:
Holding period of 1 year : same rates as the buyer’s stamp duty
Holding period of 2 years : 2/3 of the amount of buyer’s stamp duty
Holding period of 3 years : 1/3 of the amount of buyer’s stamp duty
Holding period more than 3 years : No SSD payable
Example 2:
Date of purchase : 10 September 2010
Date of sale : 23 March 2011
Sold at : $1,000,000
Holding Period : 1 year
= (sale price x 3%) – $5,400
= ( $1,000,000 x 3% ) – $5,400
= $30,000 – $5,400
= $24,600
Example 3:
Date of purchase : 18 September 2010
Date of sale : 23 November 2011
Sold at : $1,000,000
Holding Period : 2 years
= [ (sale price x 3%) - $5,400 ] x 2/3
= [ [ ( $1,000,000 x 3% ) - $5,400 ] ∻ 3 ] x 2
= [ ( $30,000 - $5,400 ) ∻ 3 ] x 2
= ( $24,600 ∻ 3 ) x 2
= $8,200 x 2
= $16,400
Example 4:
Date of purchase : 25 September 2010
Date of sale : 23 August 2013
Sold at : $1,000,000
Holding Period : 3 years
= [ (sale price x 3%) - $5,400 ] x 1/3
= [ ( $1,000,000 x 3% ) - $5,400 ] ∻ 3
= ( $30,000 – $5,400 ) ∻ 3
= $24,600 ∻ 3
= $8,200

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Residential properties bought or acquired on or after 14 January 2011 and sold within 4 years of acquisition.

Holding period more than 4 years: No SSD payable

SSD rate is as follow: Holding period of 1 year : 16% of price or market value, whichever is higher
Holding period of 2 years : 12% of price or market value, whichever is higher
Holding period of 3 years : 8% of price or market value, whichever is higher
Holding period of 4 years : 4% of price or market value, whichever is higher
Example 5:
Date of purchase : 22 February 2011
Date of sale : 25 January 2012
Sold at : $1,000,000
Holding Period : 1 year
= sale price x 16%
= $1,000,000 x 16%
= $160,000
Example 6:
Date of purchase : 23 February 2011
Date of sale : 25 May 2012
Sold at : $1,000,000
Holding Period : 2 years
= sale price x 12%
= $1,000,000 x 12%
= $120,000
Example 7:
Date of purchase : 24 February 2011
Date of sale : 10 June 2013
Sold at : $1,000,000
Holding Period : 3 years
= sale price x 8%
= $1,000,000 x 8%
= $80,000
Example 8:
Date of purchase : 25 February 2011
Date of sale : 5 June 2014
Sold at : $1,000,000
Holding Period : 4 years
= sale price x 4%
= $1,000,000 x 4%
= $40,000

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Transfer of shares by way of sale or gift
This rate applies to the transfer of both preference and ordinary shares. Stamp duty will be computed based on the Consideration or Net Asset Value, whichever is the higher amount. For every $100 or part thereof, stamp duty rate is $0.20

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Lease / Tenancy of property
All lease/tenancy with rent exceeds $1,000 per year need to be stamped. These include Lease or Tenancy Agreement to let or sublet the entire property or part of a property such as a room in a HDB flat, Agreement for Lease, Agreement for Variation of Lease, Acceptance to the Letter of Offer, Novation / Assignment of Lease and all other written agreements pertaining to any property leasing transactions. Any written agreement to renew or extend the lease also needs to be stamped.

Note: There is no refund of stamp duty on the Tenancy Agreement for the reduced rent or for the unexpired term even though the lease period has been shortened.

Stamp Duty for lease documents will be computed based on the gross rent and premium paid for the tenancy term. The rate is as follows:

For every $250 or part thereof of the average annual rent.
Lease Term Stamp Duty Rate
0 to 1 year $1
1 to 3 years $2
3 years and above $4

Note: after divided by $250, round up the amount to the nearest dollar before applying the rate.

Example 1: Fixed Rental
Rent of $3,800 / month for 1 year

= [(Rent x 12months) ∻ 250] x stamp duty rate
= [ ($3,800 x 12) ∻ 250 ] x $1
= ($45,600 ∻ 250) x $1
= $182.4 x $1
= $183 x $1
= $183
Example 2: Fixed Rental
2 years lease period
$5,800 / month for rental
$500 / month for furniture / fittings
$100 / month for maintenance charge
Total rent is $6,400
= [(Rent x 12months) ∻ 250] x stamp duty rate
= [ ($6,400 x 12) ∻ 250 ] x $2
= ($76,800 ∻ 250) x $2
= $307.20 x $2
= $310 x $2
= $620

Example 4: Percentage Lease 5 years lease period Rent of $3,000 / month plus 10% yearly gross profit to landlord. Estimated yearly profit is $100,000

Example 3: Staggered Rental
3 years lease period
1st year rent @ $2,000 / month
2nd year rent @ $2,500 / month
3rd year rent @ $3,000 / month
Total Rent is $6,400
= [ (Average Rent x 12months) ∻ 250 ] x stamp duty rate
= [ ($2,500 x 12) ∻ 250 ] x $2
= ($30,000 ∻ 250) x $2
= $120 x $2
= $240
= [ [ (Rent x 12months) + 10% of profit ] ∻ 250 ] x stamp duty rate
= [ ( ($3,000 x 12) + $10,000 ) ∻ 250 ] x $4
= [ ($36,000 + $10,000) ∻ 250 ] x $4
= ($46,000 ∻ 250) x $4
= $184 x $4
= $736

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For leases involving a premium, stamp duty will also be charged on the premium paid.

Every $100 or part thereof of the first $180,000$1

The rate is as follow:
Every $100 or part thereof of the next $180,000 $2
Every $100 or part thereof of the remainder $3
Example 5: Lease involving Premium
3 years lease period
Rent of $9,000 / month plus a premium of $284,000
Stamp duty on lease
= [ (Rent x 12months) ∻ 250 ] x stamp duty rate
= [ ($10,000 x 12) ∻ 250 ] x $2
= ($120,000 ∻ 250) x $2
= $4800 x $2
= $960
Stamp duty on premium portion
= (first $180,000 x 1%) + (remaining $104,000 x 2%)
= $1,800) + $2,080
= $3,880
Total Stamp Duty Payable
= $960 + $3,880
= $4,840

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Mortgage
Based on the amount of facilities granted on mortgage of immovable property or stocks and shares. For every $1,000 or part thereof, stamp duty rate is $4 (Maximum duty payable is $500)

Example 1:
Loan of $80,000

= (Loan amount ∻ $1,000) x stamp duty rate
= ( $80,000 ∻ 1,000 ) x $4
= $80 x $4
= $320

Example 2:
Loan of $900,000

= (Loan amount ∻ $1,000) x stamp duty rate
= ( $900,000 ∻ 1,000 ) x $4
= $900 x $4
= $3,600
= $500 (Maximum duty payable)

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Penalties for Late or Insufficient Stamping
A penalty of up to 4 times may be imposed if documents are found not stamped, stamped late or insufficiently stamped.
see : Late Payment Penalties

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Stamp Duty Calculator
see : Stamp Duty Payment Modes
see : Stamping Locations

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For more information, please visit Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore.


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*Please note that information provided is as it is basis, whilst every effort has been made to provide up-to-date information. The author is not responsible for inaccuracies or whatsoever as a result from using this information.