I was recently asked by my colleague to prepare two pro forma calculations for clients who are both in a similar situation. They were looking to sell a house at the back end of the current year and the house had started off life as their principal private residence but they had moved on without selling it and were letting it.
One case was a husband-and-wife scenario and the other was a sole occupant and in both cases the gain was marginally in excess of their annual capital gains personal allowance, and as such they would have been left with a tax bill after utilising that allowance of less than £1000.
Being aware that the rules for the calculation of gains in this situation is changing with effect from the 6th of April 2020, I thought it would be a worthwhile exercise to calculate the tax, that would arise on the basis that they weren’t able to sell the property until say mid April 2020. The effect of delaying the sale until after the rule changes was it in the case of a husband and wife their combined tax bill increased by almost £30,000 and in the case of the sole owner the tax bill increased by just under £15,000.
If you have a property which is currently being or has been let and which at one time was your principal private residence and you are thinking of selling it then we would suggest you get advice to calculate the effect of delaying that sale until post April 2020. As our two examples show how the numbers can rise significantly.