RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Singapore has one of the world's steepest property taxes: report

Tax costs make up over 20% of property prices.

Singapore has the dubious distinction of having one of the world’s highest property tax rates, according to Knight Frank’s inaugural Global Tax Report.

The report, jointly developed with EY, showed that tax costs equate to roughly 19% to 20.5% of a property’s sale price assuming the asset is held for a five-year period.

The largest tax costs are the stamp duties, namely the Buyer’s Stamp Duty and the Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty, which are payable upon purchase of the property. 

This analysis excludes the Seller’s Stamp Duty, since the property holding period in Singapore is over four years. Taxes on unfurnished residential properties will also be lower as these assets are not subject to Goods and Services Tax (GST).

In Asia, only neighboring Hong Kong has higher taxes than Singapore. Property tax costs in the territory equate to 23.2% to 22.4% of property prices, mainly because of steep stamp duties imposed on foreigners. 

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