Valuing a House for Probate Purposes
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Relevance of obtaining a probate valuation
Valuing the estate during the probate process is very important. How accurate these valuations have to be for probate purposes is a very common question. And it mainly depends on whether the estate is relatively big or small.
HM Revenue & Customs guidance says that you can estimate the value of assets if the gross value of the estate is likely to be less than a given amount – this amount changes regularly, to find the current amount click here. The gross value is the value of assets before taking away any debts, inheritance tax exemptions and reliefs – like the spouse and civil partner exemption. So you can estimate based on the information available to you, for example; estimate of the house value can be based on the value of similar houses selling nearby.
For larger estates there is a much greater emphasis on the executors to provide more accurate valuations and that’s particularly true of taxable estates. Although not mandatory, it’s a good idea to provide written valuations for example a formal written valuation from several estate agents. It’s important to take reasonable care when providing valuations to HMRC because they have wide ranging powers to challenge valuations and it often does for house valuations and if there is a difference there might be a penalty in addition to any extra tax.
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