The extension of Inheritance Tax from April is likely to hinder the recovery of the battered prime central London market according to investment company London Central Portfolio.
Back in 2015 the then-Chancellor George Osborne announced that from April 2017 IHT would be extended to offshore structures holding UK residential property - until now, they have escaped IHT completely, and so have been appealing to many investment buyers.
Now LCP says the imminent inclusion of such properties in IHT “is likely to further impact sentiment where it has been usual for buyers to use such structures.”
It adds: “For those holding or planning to acquire higher value property in corporate structures, this will be another tax burden which could postpone purchasing decisions or lead to a decision to divest. This will undoubtedly slow recovery.”
LCP says that although definitive statistics are difficult to find for the very highest end of prime London’s residential market “all information points to a softening of prices” over 2016.
“Knight Frank have recorded price falls for 2016 between 6.2 per cent to 7.3 per cent for price bands over £1m in PCL West. Other high-end estate agents have reported similar or greater falls and LCP’s in-house research corroborates this, indicating an overall fall in prices above £1m of 6.4 per cent” it continues.