24% of homes subject to inheritance tax

Almost 25% of homes sold for more than the inheritance tax threshold last year

For most people with a property to sell, seeing that the average price is rising is a positive thing. However, there is an occasion when an increasing price tag can be an issue.

New research has shown that 24% of homes sold in 2015 were worth so much, their owners would have been subject to inheritance tax.

This figure has increased from only 13% of properties in 2009.

The research, released by Saga Investment Services, showed that sales over the £325,000 have soared in the past few years, with London and the surrounding areas dominating the top ten priciest spots.

Despite the soaring house prices, the taxman still takes 40% of anything above the £325,000 threshold. Official figures have revealed that the amount of money taken by the Treasury since 2011 has increased by 70%, to a predicted £4.6 billion in 2016. payments are due to keep rising, and hit £5 billion by 2018.

At the moment married individuals and civil partners can pass on any unused tax allowance to their surviving partner, meaning the total that can currently be handed over by a couple without a potential tax bill could be £650,000, however with the average prices in some parts of the country hurtling skyward, many people may still find themselves with a hefty bill. In fact, the number of properties that have sold above this price has doubled since 2009, jumping from 2.4% to 5.5%.

April 2017 is set to see a shake up in the controversial inheritance tax regulations. Descendants of people passing on their main home will be able to take advantage of an extra £100,000 worth of tax relief, which will rise to £125,000 in 2018 to 2019, £150,000 in 2019 to 2020 and £175,000 in 2020 to 2021.

People whose estates are worth more than £2 million will have these additional allowances gradually withdrawn, tapered at a rate of £1 for every £2 their estate is over this amount

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