Capital Gains Tax



What is Capital gain?

A capital gain is the profit arising on the disposal, in whole or part ,of an asset.

James bought a property in  1990  for £100,000 and used it as his main residence until 1994, where he then rented out the property for a year. The property suffered significant damage as a result of the tenants and has therefore remained empty until 2000., when  James sold  it for £200,000.

What are his liabilities

Total Gain £200,000 – £100,000 = £100,000 – ownership 10 years.

Everyone has a CGT annual allowance (currently £10,100), which James can use to offset against his profit (Assuming that he hasn’t had any other CGT gains)

Therefore, Taxable  Gain £100,000 – £10,100 = £89,900

James lived in the property for 4 out of the 10 years, so 4/10 of the gain is exempt  as it was his principle home

In addition, as the property was his principal home, he was eligible for  “principal private residence relief”, so that the final 3 years of ownership are also exempt, 3/10 of the gain.

Therefore, 7/10 of the gain is exempt as a result of the above reliefs.

He also rented the property out  for a year and therefore James is entitled to another relief called “private letting relief”: Which is the lowest of:

  • The amount of gain already exempted under Principal Private residence relief,
  • The gain arising as a consequence of the letting, and
  • £40,000


Capital gain from sale £100,000
Annual exemption -£10,000
Taxable Gain £89,900
Principle home exemption&Principal private residence 7/10th -£62,930
Private Letting Relief up to £40K – £26,970 (£89,900 – £62,930)

Capital Gains Tax Liability  £0

Therefore, James  would have no Capital Gains Tax liability on the sale of his property.


CGT as of June 2010 is charged at 28% for high earners and 18% for basic tax payers. However, an individual’s capital gain will be added to their income, when assessing whether they remain a basic rate tax payer for the purpose of CGT.

You must in all cases seek your own independent legal and tax advice from HM Revenue&Customs or other suitably qualified person. The Council /Officer will not be held responsible for any guidance or advice given in respect of legal or financial matters. The case studies specified on this website are for illustrative purposes only.