16 Sep 2014
February 25, 2012 - Filed under: Antiques Advice — David

The current credit crisis has led many owners of antiques to revaluate their options. However, if you’re thinking of selling your antique marquetry furniture , you may be in for a nasty surprise – the taxman could be waiting to snatch away almost 1/3 of your earnings.

Not so long ago, the idea of making a tidy profit from the sale of an English antique dining table at a Cumbrian auction would have been unthinkable. However, this was before wealthy Chinese buyers began bidding crazy prices for the type of English furniture that has gone out of style over here, such as Victorian nursing chairs and antique oak pedestal desks . The Chinese wealthy elite believe having English antiques in their homes gives them social standing, and are prepared to pay many times over the valuation estimate. Unfortunately, the promised rise in the Capital Gains Tax threshold hasn’t happened, meaning you could be hammered for 28% of your windfall, if the bidding rises above a certain value. Currently, this is £6,000. A while back, this would have been a top-end estimate for an antique desk in Cumbria – but not anymore.

There are ways to mitigate CTG, such as using your partner’s annual tax exemption – but this only applies if you are in a civil relationship. Alternatively, you could leave the antique desk where it is and sell the clock on the mantelpiece; antique clocks are mysteriously classified as wasting assets. Or you could visit an antique dealer in Lancashire, who will negotiate a fair price that will ensure the tax man goes home empty handed.

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