Mumbai: Stamp duty to cost more from April as Ready reckoner rates set to rise

Mumbai: In not so good news for the property buyers, Ready reckoner rates will see an average hike of three to five per cent this year, sources from the Stamp Duty Office have said, which means that property buyers will thereby have to pay an increased stamp duty.

In certain cases, the hike will be up to eight per cent. The ready reckoner for financial year 2018-19 will be released on April 1 with immediate effect; the last ready reckoner was released on January 1, 2018, reported DNA. Ready reckoner rates can be defined as the rates at which the government levies stamp duty on the sale or purchase of a flat while registration. These rates are fixed by the stamp duty office based on previous years’ transactions.

The stamp duty office, before fixing the ready reckoner rates, does a thorough research on the registration documents and on the areas where it finds that properties are being registered at a higher value than the existing ready reckoner rate. The rates are therefore increased.

In the year 2016-17, ready reckoner rates were raised by seven per cent in Mumbai. The following year, that is 2017-18, when the market was deeply affected by demonetisation, GST and MahaRERA, the average ready reckoner rates were increased by 6.75 per cent amid changing dynamics.

When contacted Inspector General for Registration, Anil Kawde for confirmation, he said, “I cannot comment on the ready reckoner rates, but it is going to be positive.” He didn’t elaborate any further.

“We have heard from our sources that the hike will be marginal, but there will indeed be a hike and the reason is to achieve the target,” said advocate Vinod Sampat, an expert in co-operative and housing matters.

Stamp duty is one of the highest revenue generator for the state. It was only in the year 2009 that ready reckoner rates weren’t increased. The developer fraternity on several occasions has requested the government to not hike ready reckoner rates as it has an adverse effect on the business.

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