I am advised by Revenue that, in the absence of consanguinity relief (i.e. for property transferred between certain relatives) or the exemption on transfers of land to young trained farmers, stamp duty on a sale of farmland is treated as a transfer of non-residential property. A transfer of such property is charged at 6% of the consideration for conveyances executed on or after 11 October 2017.
The transitional measures referred to in my Budget speech will come into effect on the enactment of the Finance Bill. This means that where a binding contract was in place before 11 October 2017 and the subsequent deed of conveyance or transfer is executed before 1 January 2018, stamp duty will be chargeable at the lower rate of 2%.
Anyone who is affected by this measure and makes a stamp duty return to Revenue in relation to a transfer or conveyance of farmland before the enactment of the Finance Bill will be liable to pay the 6% rate of stamp duty introduced from Budget night, but will be able to claim a refund of the difference between the 2% and 6% rates after the Finance Bill is enacted. In the normal course of events, the Finance Bill is usually enacted before the end of December.