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IHT overwhelmingly hits London and South East

Inheritance tax (IHT) takes are spread widely across the UK, figures show, with London and the South East of England paying the most.

In the 2018/19 tax year, Londoners and those in the South East each forked out an estimated £1.1 billion on their estates.

That's compared to the £61 million and £40m gleaned from the North East and Northern Ireland respectively.

Property prices were one of the main drivers of larger IHT bills in these regions, with the cost of the average home standing in London at £500,000, compared with £195,000 in Yorkshire and the Humber, which paid £171m in IHT in the 2018/19 tax year.

Analysis also shows that the county of Hertfordshire paid more in IHT than Northern Ireland and Wales combined.

The tax take in Hertfordshire (population: 1.2m) was £149m, while the total of Northern Ireland and Wales (combined population: 5m) amounted to £142m.

The median payment came to £218.5m in the UK, while the total paid throughout the UK was £4.6bn.

The IHT take is forecast to reach a record £6bn next year thanks to booming house prices, a five-year freeze in tax breaks announced at the March Budget and a tragic rise in deaths caused by COVID-19.

Talk to us about shielding your estate from IHT.