Could someone advise me on my position in relations to ‘Linked Transactions’ on the purchase of 4 flats. My wife and I intend to purchase 2 flats each from private vendor. The 2 sets of flats both fall under the ?175k limit. Would this be considered a linked transaction and therefore we would have to pay stamp duty at 3%.
Looks like you have linked transactions I’m afraid. Your only hope would be to show that each purchase was unrelated and at a price that would have been agreed for a single purchase in the absence of the others but this looks to be unlikely here.
At a course I attended last year, we were given an illustration of the linked transactions rules. We were told it had come from Crispin Taylor of HMRC – his hypothetical (I hope!) “Stamp Duty Chocolate Tax”. Relevant extracts:
(1) I go into a shop and buy 2 chocolate bars, each at the price marked on them. The transactions are not linked.
(2) The facts are as in (1) but the shopkeeper gives me a discount for bulk purchase. The transactions are linked.
(3) The facts are as in (1) but there are no prices marked. The shopkeeper takes a good look at me and names a price. The transactions are probably linked.
Unfortunately property purchases are in (3) above, as even if there is an asking price the buyer rarely ends up paying it exactly.