UK200Group: HMRC should extend property tax payment terms

Jessica Bird

May 26, 2020

property sales tax

Professional services network the UK200Group is calling for HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to defer the requirement to pay Capital Gains Tax on unsold homes during COVID-19. 

This would address the fact that homesellers who have purchased a new home may struggle to sell within nine months of moving out during the current crisis.

The group, which represents 600 partners, is also warning buyers not to purchase a new home without selling their old one first, unless they are prepared to pay thousands extra in taxes if the sale is delayed.

Currently, if a person moves home but cannot find a buyer for the current property, they pay a 3% Stamp Duty Land Tax surcharge on the new house, and have three years to sell the former home and reclaim the 3%.

However, there is the risk that Capital Gains Tax could be liable if the former property cannot be sold within nine months of moving out.

Andrew Jackson, head of corporate tax at Fiander Tovell and chair of the tax panel of the UK200Group, said: “With a significant possibility that the housing market will stall or slow down, many people who chose to purchase a new property but without having a buyer for their old home could find themselves tens of thousands of pounds out of pocket.

“That is why we are calling on HMRC to relax the deadlines on selling the former home.

“In the meantime our advice is to think very hard about the possibility that your old home could take longer to sell than you expect.”

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