Average south-eastern house above IHT threshold

23 August 2006
The average price of most types of houses throughout all the London boroughs and the south-east of England is well above the inheritance tax (IHT) threshold.

According to the findings of Halifax bank, the average price of a detached property in London (£640,499) is well over double the lower limit for the total estate owing inheritance tax of £285,000.

Equally, the average price of a semi-detached property in London (£362,485) is also significantly higher than the IHT threshold, as is the average terraced house (£335,456) and bungalow (£304,659).

Halifax's statistics also showed that nearly half (44 per cent) of all house sales in the London area were above the IHT threshold in 2005.

"Inheritance tax revenue, along with the number of estates paying the tax, has risen sharply," said Tim Crawford, group economist at Halifax.

"This is largely due to the threshold for inheritance tax failing to keep pace with the rise in property prices over the past decade," he added.

Mr Crawford called for the IHT threshold to be raised to £430,000 in order to account for the failures of the government to mirror property price growth over the last decade.

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