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Top Inheritance Tax Planning Tips | Avoid & Reduce IHT

Top Inheritance Tax Planning Tips

What are the different ways to reduce inheritance tax? | Avoid Inheritance Tax

Top Inheritance Tax Planning Tips – Whenever a probate property is left behind by the Will of a deceased, the property, as well as the chattels (belongings) within the property, would all be subject to inheritance tax. This, therefore, mean that before anything can be distributed or sold, everything, including the chattels, must be revalued for inheritance tax calculation purposes.

Inheritance Tax (IHT) threshold remains at £325,000 for the tax year 2019/20. This allowance has stayed the same since the 2010/11 tax year (Click here for the most up-to-date inheritance tax thresholds set by the UK government). This means that anything over the £325,000 allowance in an estate would be subject to a 40% inheritance tax.

There is a misconception that only gifts given upon death are subject to inheritance tax. This is incorrect. Inheritance tax is, in fact, payable on all qualifying gifts given up to 7 years prior to the death of the deceased. The taxable rate decreases as the time of giving the gifts become more distant from the time of actual death. Due to this tax rule, inheritance tax rates may vary from 8% to 40% (in increments of 8% depending on the year).

Nobody ever wants to pay tax, in whatever form it may be. Just like most other forms of tax, though, there are ways to reduce one’s inheritance tax liability. The following are ways in which one may be able to mitigate or avoid inheritance tax.

Making a Will

The first and foremost task one should do is to write up a Will. Without a Will, assets would be divided under the intestacy rules and thus would likely be liable to inheritance tax. Careful inheritance planning will ensure that inheritance tax will be minimised.

Gifting to Spouses or Civil Partner

If you are already married or are in a civil partnership, you are legally allowed to gift anything of any value to your other half without it being subject to inheritance tax. Rules on this differ if your spouse’s or civil partner’s permanent home was outside of the UK or if they were not born within the UK.

One should also note that inheritance tax allowances are transferrable between spouses upon death. This, therefore, means that the potential inheritance tax allowance for the widow would be £650,000. If the deceased’s estate is worth, for example, £300,000, then the spouse may only receive an increase of £25,000 in inheritance tax allowance if the full £300,000 estate were to be gifted to other individuals.

Main Residence Inheritance Tax Allowance

A summer budget drawn up in 2015 allows an allowance of £150,000 for the main residence of the deceased for the 2019/20 tax year. This is set to increase to £175,000 for the 2020/21 tax year. This is only applicable when the main residence is gifted to a direct descendent of the deceased (either their child or grandchild – nieces/nephews, cousins or friends do not count). This, again, shows the importance of writing up a well thought up Will to ensure that this allowance is used effectively.

Putting Assets into a Trust

If you decide to transfer your assets into a trust, the assets transferred would not form as part of your estate on death. Although assets transferred may be subject to capital gains tax. Non-cash assets transferred into a trust will be subject to capital gains tax, because the transferor is effectively selling his/her assets to the trust. The assets can potentially be exempt from inheritance tax if the transferor does not pass away within 7 years from the transfer. Income generated from a trust will also be subjected to income tax. The following are several of the most popular trusts used by inheritance planners to minimise tax liabilities.

Out-of-Income Gifts

There are gifts that are exempt from inheritance tax if they meet certain conditions under Section 21 of the Inheritance Tax Act 1984. Even if such gifts are made within 7 years of the death of the deceased, it would not be subjected to inheritance tax. The exemption can only be applied if three of the following conditions are met:

  1. It was considered as part of the normal expenditure of the transferor.
  2. It was considered out-of-income.
  3. The transfer of gift(s) left the transferor enough income to sustain his/her normal standard of living.

“Normal expenditure” is anything that includes regular or usual expenses, in relation to the transferor as opposed to other individuals.

“Out-of-income” is anything that came out of regular income. HMRC generally considers anything kept within two years as income and anything after two years as capital.

Such gifts that are out-of-income should not affect the transferor’s “normal standard of living”, whereby the transferor would not need to use his/her capital to meet normal living expenses.

Gift away assets that do not attract Capital Gains Tax

Another method to reduce inheritance tax is to gift away any assets that are classified as negative equity, whereby the purchase price is higher than the current market value. This will ensure that the transferor would not be liable to any capital gains tax, nor will there be any inheritance tax payable for the transferor upon death if it was gifted longer than 7 years prior to the transferor’s death.

Giveaway to Registered Charities

All assets given to charities are free from inheritance tax. As an extra incentive, if one decides to give at least 10% of their estate to charity, the rest of their estate will be taxed at 36% as opposed to 40%.

Spend the Money

The easiest out of all tax avoidance methods would be to simply spend the money before you pass away. It is counter-intuitive to save all the money, and have it taxed at 40% upon death. It is much more logical to spend it whilst you still can.

How can Auction Agent, your local property auction house, help you?

We, Auction Agent, are experienced property auctioneers with extensive local property knowledge for your area. Auction Agent has unparalleled knowledge against their competitors when it comes to properties based in Burnley, Blackburn, Accrington, Rossendale, Nelson, Bacup, Rawtenstall, Blackpool, Clitheroe, Preston, Bury, Bolton and Lancashire. With our traditional auction method, Auction Agent can ensure that lots sold on our property auction platform will complete anywhere from as little as one day to an absolute maximum of 28 days. Auction Agent has a combined experience of over 50 years within the UK property market – we can most certainly answer any property questions you have, whether you are looking to sell a house, buy a property or just curious about property auctions in general. Auction Agent property auction house utilises all the leading online property portals including Rightmove, Zoopla, and PrimeLocation, as well as social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, in order to maximise the exposure of your property to potential bidders. Furthermore, with our extensive database of cash-ready property investors, you can rest assured that your property will get all the attention it deserves from high-conversion buyer leads.

Let Auction Agent help you in dealing with your probate property today with our incredibly easy and convenient property auction selling process and buying processcontact us for an extensive probate property valuation report for your inheritance tax report to the HMRC.

Do you have a probate property near Turbary Woods Owl and Bird of Prey Sanctuary, Avenham and Miller Parks, Preston Guild Wheel, Brockholes Nature Reserve, Harris Museum and Art Gallery, Barton Brook Dairy, Cuerden Valley Park, Bowland Wild Boar Park, British Commercial Vehicle Museum, Beacon Fell Country Park, Preston Railway Station, Lancashire Infantry Museum, Ribchester Roman Museum, Preston Docks, St. Walburge’s Church, Deepdale Stadium, Claylands Park, Preston Guild Hall & Charter Theatre, The River Ribble, West Lancashire Railway, Preston Bus Station, Haslam Park, Fishergate Shopping Centre, Covered Market, Winckley Square Park, Beer Brothers Brewery, Miller Arcade, Giddy Kids, Stydd Gardens, Rufford Old Hall, The Walled Garden, The Barn, Leyland Market, Longton Brickcroft Nature Reserve, Withy Grove Park, Smithy Farm, Brindle Distillery, Hurst Grange Park, Moor Park, Preston Cenotaph, The Preston Martyrs Memoria, Lower Kem Mill, St. John’s Minster, Preston Minster, Preston Playhouse Theatre, Fishergate Bollard, Church Cottage Museum, St. Paul’s Warton, The Old Corn Mill Antiques Centre, St. George’s Shopping Centre, Preston City Trampoline Club, Ladyewell, St. John’s Shopping Centre, St. Mary’s Fernyhalgh, Barton Grange Garden Centre, The Flower Bowl Entertainment Centre, Monkey Magic, Brig N Barrel, Sweets & Treats, Cann Bridge Ale House, The Black Bull Inn, Northcote Cookery School, The Grapes, Stanley House Spa, The Bee Centre, Shores Hey Farm, Towneley Hall, The Singing Ringing Tree, Gawthorpe Hall, Turf Moor, St. Peter’s Church, Pendle Hill, Pendle Heritage Centre, Animal Quackers, Whalley Abbey, Liv Spa, Burnley Mechanics, Angel Inn, Reel Cinema, Rosehill House Hotel, Sparth House Hotel, Mercure Blackburn Dunkenhalgh Hotel & Spa, Astley Bank Hotel, Northcote Hotel, Woodland Spa, Helmshore Mills Textile Museum, Whitaker Museum, Grundy Art Gallery, The New Philly Family Bar, Escape Room Centre, Marton Mere Local Nature Reserve, Opera House & Winter Gardens, Dino Mini Golf, Ascent Trampoline Park, Blackpool Zoo, Fleetwood Market, Sandcastle Waterpark, Blackpool Pleasure Beach, Coral Island, Madame Tussauds Blackpool, Blackpool Tower, or Pine Lake Resort?

For a comprehensive probate property valuation on your inherited property in Bolton, Bury, Burnley, Blackburn, Accrington, Rossendale, Nelson, Bacup, Rawtenstall, Blackpool, Clitheroe, Preston, Lancashire or any other area in the BL0, BL1, BL2, BL3, BL4, BL5, BL6, BL7, BL8, BL9, BB1, BB2, BB3, BB4, BB5, BB6, BB7, BB8, BB9, BB10, BB11, BB12, BB18, BB94, PR0, PR1, PR2, PR3, PR4, PR5, PR6, PR7, PR8, PR9, PR11, PR25 or PR26 postcodes, contact Auction Agent today on 01706 940499, or visit

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Top Inheritance Tax Planning Tips

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