Stamp Duty Question

Hi this is a long shot but I’m asking here to see if anyone can help me. I used to live in London in a 4 bed with a residential mortage. Fast forward 9 years I turned my property into a BTL and switched the mortgage to a BTL and moved into my mum’s the other side of the country and looked after her as an unpaid carer for 9 years. She died this year and the interest rate is now so high I could not afford to switch my London property to a residential so I put my inheritance towards buying my mum’s house.

I consulted the IR and they said first time that as my second property was a BTL that I didn’t have to pay stamp duty on my mum’s house. However my lawyer is adamant that I do because I used to live in before I moved here. To me if I’ve rented it and paid tax on the earnings why would that still count as a residential when I can’t even move back there.

A lawyer friend my lawyer is talking b … rubbish. So I rang the IR again today and the new advisor told me it was up to me to find the answers on their website, but their website doesn’t cover that particular issue. I have 14 days to pay or I get fined. Everyone I ask tells me something different and it seems to be a grey area when it shouldn’t be. A friend was in the exact same position as me and she wasn’t subject to stamp duty but her lawyer has since retired. What I am trying to avoid is going round to lots of lawyers to getting advice and getting charged over and over again.

I feel so frustrated by this. My question is how can it be a second home when the only home I have is my mum’s house. Thanks for listening to my rant I look forward to any wisdom any seasoned landlords might be able to offer - Joy


The higher rate of stamp duty is due. It applies if you will own more than 1 residential property, and a property you rent out is a residential property so if you buy another property to live in you will own more than 1 residential property and therefore have to pay the extra tax.

I dont believe higher rate is due. It will be your main home, i dont see how living their previously effects things. If you were to purchase another BTL then the higher rate is payable.

If you were to be disposing of your main residence you owned and then purchased a new main residence then for certain it would not be due (even owning a BTL). Yours is a similar scenario.

Ring around conveyancers, you wont need to pay for this. Dont use cheap online ones.


Agree with Mark 10 .Ask a conveyencer When you lived there to look after Mum you did not then own it as your home

It’s definitely due. You arent selling your main residence so you cant claim that exemption.

I am reconsidering my earlier reply…Depending on what amount of tax would be due, you could buy a dirt cheap property as your “main home” and then dispose of it, whilst buying your moms home.

You could buy a very small share of a property, “move in” and then dispose of. I believe this still qualifies as disposing of main residence.

Not sure how practical this would be of course in your circumstance.

I agree that the higher rate SDLT is due. I think that there may even be an example on the HMRC website that covers this scenario.

Thanks everyone, it sounds like I need to pay the tax at the higher rate. That’s very helpful, thanks

I would be inclined to agree with this statement / assumption, as you are entitled to one personal residence outside of your letting property portfolio.

As Mark 10 notes, I believe you are entitled to trade up or down your personal residence without paying the increased SDLT for BTL’s.

Are you not the beneficiary of your mothers will?

I believe that this only applies if you own your place of residence immediately prior to buying a new one.

Up to three years from sale of only residence.

ask more lawyers. explain the whole situ

Contact the Inland Revenue, explain that you are still trying to work things out because you’ve had very conflicting advice. Arrange a suspension. They should do that in this case. If they don’t, then you say you want to make an arrangement to pay in protest until you can confirm your legal situation.

I have found the Inland Revenue service to be absolutely amazingly good.

I found myself in a situation where I need to pay Stamp Duty and I couldn’t and I had a very good reason for not paying it in full And they arrange the payment scheme for me. They won’t do that for everybody I did have a very very good reason.

I definitely think that they will give you some relief

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