Annual house price growth hits 2.1%

Published on January 13, 2020 by Crawfords Accounting

The Halifax House Price Index for November 2019 saw annual house price growth reach 2.1% following its biggest monthly rise since February.

Compared with the previous month, house prices were up by a full percentage point at an average of £234,625.

The quarterly change was a little more subdued at just 0.2%, but overall for the year house prices were up by a healthy 2.1%.

Russell Galley, managing director at Halifax, said: “Prices are now up by £3,904 since the start of the year.

“While a degree of uncertainty remains evident, it’s also clear that buyers and sellers are responding to factors such as improved mortgage affordability and the limited supply of available properties.”

He added that the property market is likely to remain resilient as it has done for most of this year, leading to further modest gains as we move into 2020.

For those looking to cash in on rising house prices, this relatively rapid growth rate makes it important to consider the tax implications of selling a property.

Selling at a significantly higher price could incur substantially more capital gains tax on properties that form part of a buy-to-let portfolio or are part of an inherited estate.

However if your property is your primary residence and always has been, you should qualify for Private Residence Relief so that you do not have to pay capital gains tax on the increase in value.

There are certain other rules and exemptions that might apply, for example:

  • Tax relief on property that was occupied by a dependent relative.
  • Tax relief on gifts to charity, or to your spouse or civil partner.
  • Married couples may only designate one property as their main home at any one time.

This last point is worth remembering if you are legally married or in a civil partnership, but live separately from your partner, as it could mean you are not entitled to Private Residence Relief if you come to sell your current residence.

If you are uncertain about any of the above or you want advice from our Manchester accountants on capital gains tax and how to reduce your exposure to it, please contact Crawfords today.

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