Description of key terms used in Land Transaction Tax (LTT) statistics published by the Welsh Revenue Authority (WRA).

Organisation:
First published:
27 June 2019
Last updated:

Reported notifiable transactions

Taxpayers must notify the WRA of all land transactions with a value above £40,000. There are also circumstances where certain lease transactions are not notifiable if they are less than 7 years in duration. For further information, see paragraph LTTA/6030 in our LTT technical guidance.

When filing an LTT return, the organisation paying the return has 30 days after the effective date to submit and pay the return. We are only able to present statistics on the transactions reported to us. This will include data on transactions that may not have been notifiable, although this is generally unlikely.

Tax due

The amount of LTT due is calculated for reported notifiable transactions that have been submitted to WRA. The amount of tax due is calculated using LTT tax rates and tax bands, which vary depending on the type of transaction.

The tax due will generally relate to the data on the transactions which take place. It is not the same as the cash actually received, which may arrive up to 30 days (or more in the case of late returns) after the transaction takes place.

Value of property taxed

To calculate the amount of tax due, the purchase price of the transaction (also called the consideration) is collected on the tax return. 

Where a freehold is being purchased, in most cases, the consideration is the purchase price of the property. In certain circumstances the market value of the property will be entered rather than the price paid. 

For residential leasehold purchases the consideration takes the form of a premium, which is usually the value of the property. 

However, for newly granted non-residential leases, the consideration represents the premium to acquire the lease. Additionally, where rent is payable under the terms of the lease, the rental figures will be used to calculate the net present value of the lease, which is taxed.

Further guidance on the net present value is available at paragraph LTTA/4080 in our LTT technical guidance.

Residential transactions

These are purchases of residential property. Residential property is defined as:

  • a building, or part of a building, that is used or suitable for use as one or more dwellings, or is in the process of being constructed or adapted for such use;
  • land that is or forms part of the garden or grounds of such a building (including any building or structure on such land); and
  • an interest in or right over land that subsists, or is to subsist, for the benefit of such a building or such land.

Residential transactions can either be at the:

  • main rate; usually where the buyer does not already own any other dwellings, or where the buyer is replacing their main residence; and
  • higher rates; usually where the buyer already owns other dwellings, or the buyer is not an individual (for example, a company).

For further information, see paragraph LTTA/1050 in our LTT technical guidance.

Non-residential transactions

These are any transactions that are not residential, such as transactions involving shops, offices, or agricultural land.

WRA statistics on non-residential transactions also include properties that are not wholly residential (namely, properties which have both residential and commercial elements).

For further information, see paragraph LTTA/1060 in our LTT technical guidance.

Reliefs

Reliefs can be claimed on both residential and non-residential properties. Reliefs reduce the amount of tax due when certain conditions are met. It should be noted that multiple reliefs can be applied to a single transaction and reliefs may reduce the tax due to zero (known as a full relief) or by a certain percentage or amount (known as a partial relief). 

The most common reliefs claimed are typically: group relief; reliefs for acquisitions involving multiple dwellings; and charity relief. More information on each of the reliefs and when they apply can be found in published guidance on the WRA website.

Linked transactions

Linked transactions cover multiple transactions between same buyers and the same sellers where they form part of a single scheme, arrangement, or series of transactions. These transactions may or may not occur at the same time. For example, this could involve purchase of a freehold and a leasehold relating to same property, as well as multiple properties being sold by the same seller and bought by the same buyer over a period of time.

Information on which transactions are linked to which should be provided by the taxpayer on the tax return, but this is not always the case. Where the WRA is not provided with this information, this can affect the quality of our analysis relating to linked transactions within our wider data. In particular, this affects our reliefs analysis and therefore we exclude linked transactions here (see footnotes to charts in section 5 of the quarterly and annual statistical releases).

For further information on linked transactions, see the published guidance on the WRA website.

Higher rate refunds

If within three years of completing a higher rates LTT transaction, the buyer sells their previous main residence, they may be eligible for a refund of the additional higher rate of LTT. It is required that the purchased dwelling was intended to be a replacement for their previous main residence.

For further information on higher rates of LTT and refunds, see the published guidance on the WRA website.

Dates (effective, submitted, cut-off, refund approval)

Various dates are used in WRA statistics to present data over time.

Effective date

This is when the tax becomes liable to be paid, usually when a transaction is completed on a property.
 
Data presented in our statistical releases is primarily based on the effective date of the transaction. Whilst using the effective date in analysis can lead to greater volatility in the data (for example, due to a change in taxation rates), and revisions in successive releases and data reports, this date relates to the point at which the transaction took place and not a notional future date when the tax return was received. This also means that the series created from our analysis will reflect changes in tax rates and policy at the time that any changes take place.

For further information, see paragraph LTTA/1040 in our LTT technical guidance

Submitted date

This is the date when a tax return is submitted to the WRA. Other statistical publications in the UK use submitted date to produce their statistics. Therefore, we have included some comparable statistics on submitted date in section 10 of our annual statistical release.

Cut-off date

LTT returns can be submitted at any time. When producing our monthly, quarterly and annual LTT statistics, we use the third Monday of the month as the ‘cut-off date’. New returns or amendments received after this time are not included in our statistics published in that month.

Refund approval date

In section 6 of our annual statistical release, we include some statistics on higher rate refunds by the date when the refund was approved by the WRA.