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Mortgage Information

Stamp Duty Information

Stamp duty in Ireland is a tax payable to the Government based on the documents used in the transfer of property. In other words, a tax calculated using the criteria listed in the Title Deeds or Conveyance document which transfers the ownership of the property. The amount is paid to the Revenue Commissioners (usually by a conveyance solicitor) who then place a stamp on the deeds. Without this stamp, the deeds cannot be registered.

The value of the property (home or apartment, land or housing site) and your status (whether you are a first-time buyer, investor, etc.) will determine the amount of stamp duty that is due. Stamp duty is divided up into different categories and rates and the amount you pay will depend on:

  • Whether you are going to live in the house or apartment (residential or owner-occupier) or you are an investor
  • Whether as an owner-occupier, you are a first time buyer
  • Whether it is a new or second-hand house or apartment
  • The size of the house or apartment.

Stamp duty is also payable on land/housing site transfers without residential buildings.

Buyer Status Definition

If the Stamp Duty regulations define you as a first-time buyer, you are exempt from paying this tax on the purchase of either a new house or a second-hand home (provided that you live in the property as your principal residence). If you cannot meet the first-time buyer criteria, you are deemed to be a non-first-time buyer, a non-owner-occupier or an investor, and stamp duty must be paid at the current rates detailed below.

First-Time Buyer Exemption

A first-time buyer is defined as a person (or where there is more than one buyer, each person) meeting all the following criteria:

  • Someone who has not on any previous occasion, either individually or jointly, purchased or built on his/her own behalf a house in Ireland or abroad. There are further criteria for divorcees or separated couples explained below.
  • Where the property purchased is occupied by the purchaser or a person on his/her behalf as their principal place of residence.
  • Where no rent is to be derived from the property for 5 years after completion of the purchase. New rules permit the Revenue to “claw-back” some or all of the stamp duty which would have been payable on the purchase, if the property is rented out within the 5 year period.

Divorced or Separated Persons

A divorcee or separated person may fall into the first-time buyer category if they meet the following criteria:

  • If they have left their former marital home and,
  • Do not retain any interest in the marital home and,
  •  
  • If immediately prior to the date of the judicial separation, deed of separation, decree of divorce or decree of nullity they had no interest in a house other than the marital home
  • Also, at the date of the judicial separation, deed of separation, decree of divorce or decree of nullity, your separated or former spouse must be living in the house which was occupied by you both before your separation or divorce. 

Stamp Duty Rates

Unless you are classed as a first-time buyer, the following rates apply to houses and apartments based upon a percentage of the property value:

First €125,000 no charge
Balance up to €1,000,000 @ 7%
Balance over €1,000,000 @ 9%

No stamp duty is chargeable on the purchase of a new house or apartment in which the floor area measures 125 square meters or less. There are no such exemptions for any type of second-hand property.

For land/housing sites, the following rates apply:

Up to €10,000 Exempt
€10,001 - €20,000 1%
€20,001 - €30,000 2%
€30,001 - €40,000 3%
€40,001 - €70,000 4%
€70,001 - €80,000 5%
€80,001 - €100,000 6%
€100,000 - €120,000 7%
€120,001 - €150,000 8%
Over €150,000 9%

When is Stamp Duty actually paid?

Stamp duty must be paid to the Revenue when your solicitor is closing the sale. Usually the solicitor arranges this payment on the buyer’s behalf.

More Information

The Revenue Commissioners have published a leaflet with frequently asked questions (FAQs) about first-time buyers status qualification and stamp duty relief in general. Please visit their website (www.revenue.ie) if you need further clarification regarding a particular circumstance.

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