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HMRC internal manual

Inheritance Tax Manual

Land and Buildings: introduction

Interests in land in England, Wales and Northern Ireland may sometimes be referred to as realty or real property. In Scotland interests in land may be referred to as heritable property.

Interests in land can be divided into two broad categories, which are

  • freehold, which is the superior title to land, where the owner’s right to the land is not limited by time, and
  • leasehold, where the owner only has title to the land for a fixed time (for example, owners of flats usually have a leasehold interest – though this may be for a comparatively long period such as 999 years)

Land forming part of a person’s estate has to be valued for IHT purposes - like anyother property, on ‘open market value’ (IHTM09703 basis, IHTA84/S160).