One of the more predictable elements of the summer Budget was the introduction of a new ‘Property Nil Rate Band’, which will mean that eventually individuals can pass on a further £175,000 tax free to their direct dependents, in addition to the current £325,000 nil rate band that exists at present.
As with all new legislation however, there are some things to be aware of.
First of all, the new allowance will be introduced in tranches as follows:
- 2017/18 – £100,000
- 2018/19 – £125,000
- 2019/20 – £150,000
- 2020/21 – £175,000
These amounts are given with reference to the date of death of the deceased.
In addition, the new Nil Rate Band will only apply to a family home (i.e your main residence), passed onto direct descendants, which in the legislation are taken to mean children and grandchildren. There is some further consultation on where the property could be left to certain types of trust.
As with all new legislation, it is important to review you current plans to make sure you get the full benefit. Any older will that include gifts into trust, may not be eligible to claim the new nil rate band, and this could also be true for those who do not own a home, or who choose to leave their home to people not considered to be direct descendants.
We will be covering the new changes in detail during our updated Estate Planning Seminars, running from September onwards. You find out more information here.
The Summer Budget contained little in the way of surprises (nice ones anyway), however the rate of change seems to be building, creating a more dynamic and fluid financial planning world. There are already hundreds of budget summaries online, so I will cover here some of the key points that might impact on Buckingham Gate Clients:
1. Dividend Tax Changes
From 2016, dividends will no longer come with their 10% tax credit, which used to satisfy the basic rate tax liability for those in the 20% tax band. From 6th April 2016 dividend income will be taxed at 7.5% for basic rate taxpayers, 32.5% for higher rate taxpayers and 38.1% for additional rate taxpayers, once income from dividends exceeds a £5000 tax free allowance. This news will be unwelcome for business owners who receive large amounts of dividends as part of their remuneration and those with large share portfolios outside of a tax wrapper such as an ISA.
Business owners especially, may wish to review how they are remunerated from their companies.
2. New IHT Property Nil Rate Band
I have written a more detailed article about this change here.
3. Removal of Higher Rate Tax Relief on Buy to Let Investment
I have written before about the potential pitfalls of using pension assets to fund buy to let purchases, however the case has just become even less compelling. The Chancellor has announced that over the coming years, tax relief on buy to let mortgages will be restricted to just 20%. This will have the effect of reducing the net returns from buy to let investments for higher rate taxpayers. While buy to let property is undoubtedly a success story for many, there are risks and pitfalls.