On a trip to Kuala Lumpur last week, I was discussing the acquisition of an oil palm plantation with clients when the issue of disbursements such as estate land board application & registration fees, stamp duty on the instrument of transfer cropped up. Although my team & I are aware, as announced in the 2017 Budget, the stamp duty on the instrument of transfer for amounts over RM1,000,000/- is set to increase from 3% to 4% WEF 1st January 2018, it was only then that the magnitude of the proposed amendment to the Stamp Act dawned on us, which is the reason for sharing this write up.
Because, even if you’re not planning on purchasing a large plantation, it might be something worth looking into. For instance, if you were to purchase a property worth RM2,000,000 after 1st of January, 2018 as opposed to today, the increased cost to you could potentially be RM10,000/-. So, rather than wait till December 2017 when it is anticipated “panic” signings will occur and when most people tend to be on leave, why not think of entering into your purchases now? Something to mull over!
Author: Sam Choong
Sam Choong is a lawyer practising in Malaysia. His areas of practice include estate planning, wills and UK inheritance tax for expats residing or seeking to retire in Malaysia.