Corporate ownership of “expensive” dwellings

Special rules known as ATED (Annual Tax on Enveloped Dwellings) apply where an interest in a dwelling (typically a house or flat, whether freehold or leasehold) situated in the UK is owned or acquired by a company; by a partnership or LLP with at least one corporate member; or by a collective investment scheme.

The ATED rules normally only apply where a dwelling owned by a company is lived in or available for occupation by one or more shareholder of the company or persons connected with them.  There are exemptions where the property is used in a genuine property business.  However the exemption has to be claimed on a year by year basis – see further below.

The ATED rules are intended to discourage ownership of “expensive dwellings” owned by companies and used as homes by the company’s owner(s).  The rules impose:

  • A penal 15% rate of Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) when a company acquires an ”expensive dwelling”
  • An annual tax charge based on the value of the dwelling

For simplicity, this page refers throughout to “company”. Although described as applying to “expensive” properties, some of these rules can apply to properties worth as little as £500,000.  We refer below to a property within the ATED rules and not exempt as an “ATED dwelling”.

It does not matter whether the company owning it is resident in the UK or not, but commercial properties are not within the scope of the special rules. Nor are properties situated outside the UK. Nor do the new rules apply to trusts, even if the trustee of the trust is a company.

There is  exemption from ATED where the company carries on a genuine property business – covering (inter alia) property developers, investors and dealers.

There are conditions to qualify for relief, the most notable being that no-one connected with the company lives in the property. This relief is not automatic: it needs to be recorded and claimed by submitting an annual ATED exemption return.  In the case of SDLT exemption from the ATED 15% rate has to be claimed on the normal SDLT return.



Sam Inkersole

In 2022, Sam won the Taxation’s Rising Star award at the Taxation Awards in and was named in the Accountancy Age 35 Under 35.

Jon Wedge

While Jon’s client work focuses on the financial services sector, he also oversees the firm’s assurance service, as well as supporting the trainees following in his footsteps.


Elana joined us in 2017 as an ACA trainee, after graduating from Durham University where she had studied languages. She is now a manager in our assurance team.


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