Dear Dawn

Being an investor I have quite a large portfolio of properties and am beginning to feel concerned about the impact Inheritance Tax on my estate. Have you a few simple pointers that you can share?

Concerned Investor

Dear Concerned Investor

The most important thing you need to do regardless of the size of your estate is go and have a professional will drafted by an expert who can advise you on the best way forward.

It’s also worth speaking to a financial planner as they will be able to advise you with respect to holding assets in trusts, which can also help you avoid paying too much Inheritance Tax.

Dying without a properly drafted will in place could land your family with a large and unexpected bill, not to mention the fact that those who benefit may not be your intended beneficiaries.

Inheritance Tax is currently levied at a rate of 40% on the value of an estate above the tax-free threshold, which has been frozen at £325,000 per person since 2009.

Married couples and civil partners are entitled to double the allowance, passing on assets to their children or other relations worth up to £650,000 before a tax charge is triggered.

However following an announcement in the 2015 Budget the Government will add a family home allowance worth £175,000 per person to the existing £325,000 tax free allowance from April 6, 2017.

This means individuals can pass on assets worth up to £500,000, including a home, without paying any Inheritance Tax at all.

For married couples and civil partners, the total is £1million.

Dawn Sandoval is the owner of Dawn Sandoval Residential in Canary Wharf .