Your enquiries

Thank you for your enquiries this month. It is always a pleasure to hear from you. Here are just some of the items that have been concerning you

I am selling my home privately to a friend. His solicitor says that I need an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). Surely as I am selling to a friend this is not the case.
You do need an EPC whenever a property is built, sold or rented. You must order an EPC for potential buyers and tenants before you market your property to sell or rent. An EPC contains information about a property’s energy use and typical energy costs and recommendations about how to reduce energy use and save money. An EPC gives a property an energy efficient rating from A (most efficient) to G (least efficient) and is valid for 10 years. You can be fined if you don’t get an EPC when you need one. There are some buildings that do not need an EPC but your home does.

My cousin and I inherited a property from our Aunt. We have owned it for approximately 10 years and receive a rental income from the property. My cousin wants to sell the property. Are there any tax implications in doing this?
If you sell the property then you and your cousin will incur a capital gains tax liability. Capital gains tax will be charged on the increase in the value of the property between the date you acquired it and the date of sale. So for example if the property were worth £250,000 when you acquired it and it is sold for £300,000 there will be a gain of £50,000. You may deduct some costs and expenses from this in order to reduce the gain. You and your cousin also each have an annual capital gains tax allowance that you may deduct from the gain provided you have not already used this allowance in the tax year of the sale. The capital gains tax allowance for this tax year is £11,700. So in this example you would each have a gain of £25,000 from which you could deduct your annual allowance of £11,700 leaving a capital gain for each of you of £13,300. You would each pay capital gains tax on this amount. If you and or your cousin are married then you may be able to make use of your spouse’s annual allowance too in order to reduce the gain further.

My great aunt has left her estate to me on my death. I believe her estate should be shared among other relatives. Can I just make gifts of monies to them when I receive my inheritance?
If you make gifts to other relatives and then die within 7 years of making those gifts then the value of those gifts (or part of them) will be included in your estate for inheritance tax purposes and may result in your estate paying more inheritance tax than it would have done if you had not made the gift. The best way to proceed would be for you and your great aunt’s executors to enter into a deed of variation of your great aunt’s will to include the other relatives. If the deed of variation is made within 2 years of your great aunt’s death then the gifts are treated as gifts from your great aunt and have no inheritance tax implications for you

If there are any legal matters that you need assistance with then you can always e mail