I am looking to buy a house in Cambridge and still want to retain my flat but the stamp duty land tax will be a lot of money. I've been told to start a limited company and sell the flat back to myself. I've done the numbers and I should save around £10,000 by doing so. Do you recommend me doing this?
Arthur Weller replies:
It seems to me that when you write 'and sell the flat back to myself' you mean sell the flat to the company. If so, you are correct that you would then not own any other property when you bought your house (although you own the shares in a company that owns a property), and you could avoid the extra 3% stamp duty land tax (SDLT). However, your company would have to pay SDLT on the purchase of the flat from you, and the extra 3% SDLT would apply to this transaction. Taking this into account, are you much better off?
This question was first printed in Property Tax Insider in August 2019.