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James HurwoodWritten by James Hurwood
Reviewed by Stephen Zeller
Last updated 10/01/2024

Key takeaways

  • Stamp duty, also known as transfer duty or a ‘transfer fee’, is a government fee paid when you purchase a property or complete a transfer of land
  • If you’re buying a home in NSW, you’ll probably have to pay stamp duty
  • First home buyers may be eligible for a stamp duty concession or exemption, or can choose to pay an annual land tax instead
  • First home buyer or not, you’ll generally need to budget for stamp duty as an upfront cost to be paid at settlement

Stamp duty and how it works

Don't quite understand stamp duty? You might want to watch this explainer from Selling Houses Australia host, Andrew Winter.

Stephen Zeller, General Manager

Expert tips for stamp duty in New South Wales

As General Manager of Money at Compare the Market, Stephen Zeller wants to help first homebuyers understand what their upfront property buying costs might look like, as well as reduce them where possible. With that in mind, here are his top three tips regarding stamp duty in New South Wales:

Get your calculations right

Stamp duty charges will differ depending on where you’re buying real estate in Australia. When calculating your stamp duty, make sure you’re using the right set of state- or territory-based rates and concessions, otherwise you could be in for a nasty surprise when it comes time to pay your transfer duty.

Remember to factor in stamp duty

Don’t forget stamp/transfer duty when factoring in the total funds needed to purchase a home, as this can often be overlooked.

We’re here to help!

Use our stamp duty calculators to get an indication of the costs which may be applicable to your scenario. If you’re unsure how much stamp duty you may need to pay, feel free to contact us and one of our Home Loan Specialists will be able to assist you.

How stamp duty works in New South Wales

Stamp duty rates in New South Wales

NSW’s transfer duty rates and thresholds are re-assessed every year by the NSW Government to ensure they’re moving in line with any changes to Australia’s Consumer Price Index (CPI). NSW’s standard transfer stamp duty applies to transfers of properties valued at under $3 million, while premium rates apply for properties of greater value.

If you purchased property or land in a previous year, it’s likely the stamp duty you paid will be different from the current rates as these have changed several times in the past few years. Using the NSW stamp duty calculator built into our home loan comparison tool can give you a better idea of what you might pay overall if you purchased your home in a prior year.

The current standard and premium stamp duty rates in NSW (as of July 2022) are listed in the table below:

Property valueTransfer duty rate
$0 to $15,000$1.25 for every $100 (minimum $10)
$15,000 to $32,000$187 plus $1.50 for every $100 over $15,000
$32,000 to $87,000$442 plus $1.75 for every $100 over $32,000
$87,000 to $327,000$1,405 plus $3.50 for every $100 over $87,000
$327,000 to $1,089,000$9,805 plus $4.50 for every $100 over $327,000
Over $1,089,000$44,095 plus $5.50 for every $100 over $1,089,000
(Premium) Over $3,268,000$163,940 plus $7.00 for every $100 over $3,268,000
Source: Revenue NSW1

How is stamp duty calculated in NSW?

Say you buy a home for $600,050. According to the duty rate brackets above, this means you’d pay a $9,805 base rate plus $4.50 for each $100 over $327,000. To figure out how much stamp duty you’d pay all up, we’ve got some calculations to do.

Step 1. Figure out how many blocks of $100 there are between $327,000 and the dutiable value of $600,050.

There’s a $273,050 difference between the two figures: $100 goes into that 2,730 times, and the additional $50 is treated as the full $100 as well. This means there are 2,731 blocks of $100 we need to use for the stamp duty calculation.

Step 2. Multiply 2,731 by $4.50 to calculate the second half of your stamp duty

2,731 x $4.50 = $12,289.50

Step 3. Add the two components of your stamp duty together

$9,805 + $12,289.50 = $22,094.50

This means that on top of the purchase price of $600,050, you’d pay approximately $22,094.50 in stamp duty. However, it’s important to note that your house-buying costs don’t end there – you may also have to pay for things like:

What types of property does stamp duty apply to in New South Wales?

In NSW, stamp duty is payable on the transfer of various property types. You’ll typically pay stamp duty if you’re purchasing:

  • Residential property
  • Holiday homes or secondary residences
  • Land
  • Commercial properties
  • Industrial properties.

However, depending on your circumstances, you could be eligible for certain stamp duty concessions or even a complete stamp duty exemption.

Exemptions and concessions are usually based on the property price but can also be granted under special circumstances (such as inheriting a deceased estate or title transfers between de facto couples). They’re also commonly available to those buying a home for the first time.


Do I have to pay stamp duty in NSW?

stamp duty rates written note NSW

Who pays stamp duty in NSW?

Unless they’re eligible for a stamp duty exemption of some kind, anyone purchasing property in NSW will have to pay stamp duty on their property transaction.

The seller of the property does not have to pay stamp duty, as the property is not being transferred into their name. However, if they purchase a property afterwards, they will have to pay stamp duty on that transaction.

Will I pay stamp duty on land in NSW?

In NSW, stamp duty is payable if you purchase vacant land of any kind, whether it be residential, commercial or industrial. You could be eligible for an exemption if the land’s market value is less than $350,000, or a stamp duty concession if it’s valued between $350,000 and $450,000.

It’s worth noting that you may still need to pay stamp duty in NSW if you acquire land as a gift or through a trust, meaning you can end up with stamp duty payable even if you didn’t purchase the land yourself.

Am I subject to stamp duty if I’m purchasing property in NSW from overseas?

Foreign buyers, companies and trusts purchasing residential property in NSW must pay transfer duty and may be subject to an additional 8% surcharge purchaser duty.2 However, you won’t need to pay the additional charge if you’re an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident, New Zealand citizen (holding a subclass 444 visa) or have a valid 309 or 820 partner provisional visa.


First home buyers in NSW and stamp duty

Do first home buyers pay stamp duty in NSW?

First home buyers in NSW may be eligible for either concessional rates or a total exemption, in accordance with the NSW First Home Buyers Assistance Scheme (FHBAS).³

These stamp duty breaks depend on the value of the property and whether you’re purchasing a new home, existing home or vacant land.

The NSW stamp duty exemptions and concessions for first home buyers (as of June 2023) are listed below:⁴

New homesExisting homesVacant land
  • Buy a new home valued at less than $800,000, apply for a full exemption, and pay no transfer duty.
  • Buy a new home valued between $650,000 and $1,000,000, and apply for a concessional transfer duty rate. The amount will be based on the value of your home.
  • Buy an established home valued at less than $800,000, apply for a full exemption and pay no transfer duty.
  • Buy an existing home valued between $650,000 and $1,000,000, apply for a concessional transfer duty rate. The amount will be based on the value of your home.
  • You won’t pay transfer duty if your land is valued at less than $350,000.
  • For land valued between $350,000 and $450,000, you’ll receive a concessional rate on your land transfer duty.


How to pay stamp duty in NSW

stamp duty wooden house visualisation NSW

When is stamp duty payable in NSW?

In NSW, stamp duty must be paid within three months of signing the contract for the sale or transfer of the property. However, if you make an off-the-plan purchase (i.e. purchasing property that’s not yet built), you may be able to delay paying stamp duty for up to 12 months. If you have a solicitor or conveyancer acting on your behalf, they will typically handle this process for you.

That being said, stamp duty will typically be paid at settlement day by your solicitor or conveyancer if the property purchase involves a home loan. With that in mind, the three-month grace period afforded to property buyers may only be useful for those who can afford to buy outright, without needing finance.

Where do I pay stamp duty in NSW?

Stamp duty payments are addressed to NSW’s revenue office either in person, via electronic funds transfer, BPAY, advance payment or by mail. For further information on how to pay your stamp duty and how non-payment could affect you, please check with Revenue NSW. However, if you have a solicitor or conveyancer acting on your behalf, they will usually handle the payment process for you.

Stephen Zeller, General Manager

Meet our home loans expert, Stephen Zeller

Stephen has more than 30 years of experience in the financial services industry and holds a Certificate IV in Finance and Mortgage Broking. He’s also a member of both the Australian and New Zealand Institute of Insurance and Finance (ANZIIF) and the Mortgage and Finance Association of Australia (MFAA).

Stephen leads our team of Home Loan Specialists, and reviews and contributes to Compare the Market’s banking-relating content to ensure it’s as helpful and empowering as possible for our readers.


  1. Revenue NSW, Transfer duty. 2022.
  2. Revenue NSW, Surcharge purchaser duty. 2022.
  3. Revenue NSW, First Home Buyer. 2022.
  4. Revenue NSW, First Home Buyers Assistance scheme. 2022.
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