What order should we buy/sell to avoid the 3% additional rate?

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We own a house in Sussex that we are currently letting out but have now put this on the market and hoping to get £210,000 (we purchased this house for £163,000) We were living in this property from 2006 to 2010. The property has been rented out and is still being rented out until December.

Since moving to Devon we have been living with parents and also renting which we are doing at the moment as could not find anywhere to buy.

We have found a property to buy for £260,000 and have a mortgage in principal.

My questions are:

1) If we buy the house in Devon when we still have the one in Sussex do we have to pay the extra stamp duty?

2) If we do have to pay the extra stamp duty can we claim it back when we sell the Sussex property?

3) If we sell the Sussex house at the same time as buying in Devon will we have to pay the extra stamp duty?

4) If we sell the house in Sussex before we buy in Devon will we have to pay the extra stamp duty?

Basically how can we get around having to pay the extra stamp duty as is does not seem fair that it’s our only property and will have to pay an extra £7,800 to move.

 

 

The answer to your questions are below:

1) Yes, you do have to pay the extra stamp duty as you did not live there in the three year period ending when you buy the house in Devon.

2) No, you cannot claim it back when you sell the Sussex property.

3) No, provided completion is on the same day.

4) If you sell the house in Sussex before you buy in Devon you will not be liable to pay the extra stamp duty land tax.

At the time of publication this response was correct however as tax legislation and practice change from time-to-time you should take specific advice before taking any action.

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