On October 29, 2015 the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore published its IRAS e-Tax Guide – GST: Guide for Property Owners and Property Holding Companies (Second Edition). According to the e-Tax Guide the aim of the guide is to explain how GST affects you as a property owner or a property holding company. Supposedly the e-Tax Guide guides you on the application of GST for property transactions and it is supposed to help you decide whether you need to register for GST if you are involved in property transactions. It is furthermore stated that the guide also clarifies the type of property that qualifies for GST exemption.

 

In paragraph 2 of the e-Tax Guide “At a glance” the following summary is given:

The sale and lease of all properties in Singapore are subject to GST, except for the sale and lease of residential properties which are exempt from GST.

 

Where the sale and lease relates to a mixed-use property, GST is chargeable on the part of the property that is approved for non-residential use while the part of the property that is approved for residential use is exempt from GST.

 

If the residential property is sold or leased with furniture and fittings (e.g. refrigerator, washing machine, dryer), only the sale or lease of the bare residential property is exempt from GST. GST is chargeable on the sale or lease of furniture and fittings in the residential property.

 

GST is claimable on the purchase and rental of non-residential property if the property is used or will be used to conduct business activities which will in turn, generate taxable supplies.

 

According to the e-Tax Guide in this second edition amendments are made to paragraphs 8.3 (Do I have to account for GST?) and to Paragraphs 8.9 and 8.10 (Do I have to account for GST on the granting of rent-free period?) which are all paragraphs in the section “GST on letting of property”.

 

The e-Tax Guide contains a glossary in which the following terms are explained:

·        Completed properties

·        GST

·        Input tax

·        Invoice

·        Output tax

·        Open market value

·        Properties under development

·        Section 33(4) agent

·        Sub-sale

·        Tax fraction

·        Tax invoice

·        Temporary Occupation Permit (“TOP”)

·        Time of supply

 

Subjects discussed in the e-Tax Guide include a.o.:

·        Do I have to charge and account for GST?

·        What are residential properties?

o       Prescribed List of Residential Buildings, Flats and Tenements

o       Prescribed List of Non-Residential Buildings, Flats and Tenements

·        Do I have to register for GST?

·        GST on sale of property

o       How to account for GST?

o       When to account for GST?

o       Do I have to account for GST on aborted sale?

o       Do I have to account for GST on Assignment of Option?

o       How to account for GST on sub-sale of a property?

§        For completed properties

§        For properties under development

o       How to account for GST on the sale of a mixed-use property?

o       Do I have to charge GST on the sale of vacant land?

o       Do I have to charge GST on the sale of a furnished residential property?

o       Do I have to account for GST on the transfer of non-residential property by way of in specie distribution?

o       Do I have to charge GST if I recover the property tax from the buyer?

·        GST on letting of property

o       Do I have to account for GST?

o       How to account for GST?

o       When to account for GST?

o       Do I have to account for GST on the granting of rent-free period?

o       Do I have to account for GST on the letting of common areas?

o       Do I have to account for GST on early termination of lease?

o       Do I have to account for GST on rental deposit?

o       Do I have to account for GST on recovery of property tax?

o       How to account for GST on the letting of a mixed-use property?

o       Do I have to account for GST on the letting of a furnished residential property?

o       Do I have to account for GST on the letting of a serviced apartment?

o       Do I have to account for GST on property used by employee?

§        Free accommodation

§        Subsidised accommodation

·        Do I have to account for GST on the service charges?

·        Can I claim input tax?

o       Transitional issues arising from the sale of property with existing tenancy

§        Rental billed in advance

§        Input tax claims

 

For further information click here to be forwarded to IRAS e-Tax Guide – GST: Guide for Property Owners and Property Holding Companies (Second Edition) as available on the website of the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore, which will open in a new window.

 

 

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