Parliamentary Question by Mr Lim Biow Chuan:
To ask the Minister for Finance whether seller's stamp duty may be waived for a collective sale if the seller does not agree to the sale and did not sign the collective sale agreement.
Parliamentary Response by Second Minister for Finance Mr Lawrence Wong:
The seller’s Stamp Duty (SSD) seeks to discourage short-term holding of residential properties, and is part of the Government’s measures to ensure a stable and sustainable property market. SSD is applicable, so long as the property is sold within the holding period.
In a collective sale of private residential properties, the collective sale committee can enter into a sale and purchase agreement on behalf of all owners, if the requisite statutory majority consent has been obtained. The sale and purchase agreement entered into by the collective sale committee is binding on all owners.
If the sale occurs within the holding period, SSD is applied, regardless of whether an individual owner consented to or opposed the sale.
There are safeguards in the Land Titles (Strata) Act to protect the interests of owners, and to ensure that collective sales are conducted in a fair manner. Non-consenting owners to a collective sale can file objections to the Strata Titles Board against the sale. Objections could be on the grounds of financial loss, and/or other reasons.