County transfer taxes plus state transfer & recordation taxes make Montgomery County a tricky place to buy real estate
Closing costs in Montgomery County, Maryland – both in terms of the required complex calculations and the high rates – may be the most unfriendly jurisdiction to home buyers and sellers compared to all other jurisdictions in the country.
Most homebuyers and sellers can very easily determine their closing costs for government transfer taxes by simply multiplying a base factor of say 1% or .5% against their contract purchase price. However, in Montgomery County, Maryland, a multitude of factors come into play when calculating this biggest chunk of closing costs.
At the time of closing on a Montgomery County, Maryland purchase transaction, the three different taxes imposed and generally split evenly between the buyer and the seller are:
- County Transfer Tax
- State Transfer Tax
- State Recordation Tax
As a guide, I have identified each tax below with the respective rates and associated variables. Or if you want to make it easy on yourself, I suggest using our Quick Quote which accounts for all these factors and variables with a few easy questions.
County transfer tax
This tax is imposed at 1% of the purchase price (or total consideration) and customarily split 50/50 between buyer and seller. Thus, typically, the buyer pays .5% and the seller pays .5%.
State transfer tax
This tax is imposed at .5% of the purchase price and customarily split 50/50 between buyer and seller. Thus, typically, the buyer pays .25% and the seller pays .25%. However, if the homebuyer is a Maryland first-time homebuyer, then the buyer is exempt from paying her portion but the seller still must pay the .25%.
State recordation tax
This tax is imposed at .69% on the first $500,000 of the purchase price plus an additional .1% on the amount of purchase price exceeding $500,000. This tax is also customarily split 50/50 between the buyer and the seller.
However, if the homebuyer will be occupying the property as a principal residence, then the first $50,000 of the purchase price is exempt from this tax, which means the tax is imposed at .069% on the first $450,000 of the purchase price.
Further, an additional .69% is imposed on the loan amount of $500,000 or less (in most cases a construction loan) to the extent it exceeds the purchase price or 1% on the loan amount over $500,000.00 to the extent it exceeds the purchase price.