8 Smart Moves to Slash Capital Gains Tax on Property Resale

8 Smart Moves to Slash Capital Gains Tax on Property Resale Tips And Tricks

Selling a property can bring in substantial profits, but it's essential to be aware of the associated tax implications, particularly the capital gains tax. This tax is applicable to the earnings from the sale of a property, and if you've held the property for more than 3 years, it falls under the category of long-term capital gains (LTCG), taxed at a flat rate of 20%. 

However, there are several smart strategies to help minimize your tax burden while selling residential property.

1. Indexation Advantage in House Sale:

Taking advantage of indexation involves adjusting the property's purchase cost to consider inflation. This helps in reducing the capital gains and, consequently, the tax on it. To benefit from indexation, hold the property for at least two years, as it applies only to long-term capital gains.

2. Joint Ownership for Tax Benefits:

Co-owning a property allows you to distribute the capital gains among co-owners based on their ownership share. This enables each co-owner to utilize their basic exemption limit, potentially lowering the overall tax liability.

3. Home Improvement Expenses:

Enhancing a property through renovations allows you to adjust the initial purchase cost, potentially lowering taxable capital gains upon sale. This acknowledges increased investment in the property, offering a chance to minimize tax liabilities. Maintain meticulous records and seek advice from a tax professional to ensure adherence to regulations.

4. Purchase a New Property (Exemption under Sec 54):

Reinvesting capital gains in another residential property is a popular way to save on taxes. To qualify for this exemption under Section 54, purchase a new property within two years after the sale. Constructing a new property within three years also qualifies for the exemption.

5. Invest in Bonds (Exemption under 54EC):

If you prefer not to reinvest in property, consider investing capital gains in government-specified bonds. This strategy provides a tax exemption, but investment must occur within six months of the property sale, and the bonds must have a lock-in period of 5 years.

6. Tax Loss Harvesting:

An effective financial strategy involves selling securities that have experienced a loss. By "harvesting" a loss, you can offset taxes on both gains and income. Losses from mutual funds or shares can be used to offset capital gains on property sales.

7. Invest in Capital Gain Account Scheme (CGAS):

If buying a house or bonds isn't feasible, consider investing in CGAS offered by public banks. This allows you to claim exemptions for the deposited amount when filing income tax returns. However, the deposited amount must be utilized within 3 years, or it becomes taxable.

8. Reinvest Gains into Shares of an Eligible Company (Section 54GB):

Under Section 54GB, individuals can reinvest long-term capital gains from property sales into shares of an eligible company or invest the amount into new startup companies involved in manufacturing or producing tangible goods. 

In a nutshell, these savvy strategies can put more money in your pocket when you sell your home. But remember, everyone's situation is unique. So, for the best results, consider seeking advice from a tax professional who can tailor advice just for you.


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