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HOW TO ESTABLISH AN EPUT:

If you want to establish an EPUT - Please let us know:

You’ll get our amazing FREE guide “How to use a SSAS and other Planning Tools to Save Tax” – which will include sections on how it is possible to use a SSAS to invest into ‘Residential Property’ and even mitigate the ‘Lifetime Limit’ and SSAS borrowing restrictions.  All using well established additional Planning Tools which we offer to all our SSAS Clients.

As an added bonus, you’ll get a FREE phone consultation – which will let you ask our tax expert all your questions before you embark upon establishing a SSAS, QNUPS or EPUT. 

INTRODUCTION: WHAT IS AN EPUT?

An ‘EPUT’ is an ‘Exempt Property Unit Trust’ – which in the UK is a Regulated Unit trust that can issue units to structures such as a SSAS. The units are issued in exchange for cash, with the EPUT’s investments paying annual income to the SSAS based on the profits made within the EPUT. Passing units from 1 person to another saves money when dealing with property ownership, as there is no SDLT on the transfer of units, whereas transferring a property in almost all circumstances triggers SDLT on either the value of the property or the size of the mortgage secured upon it.

As a Unit Trust the EPUT can (in certain circumstances) qualify as a ‘diverse’ investment vehicle – which makes it exempt from paying tax on rental income, or gains from buying/selling assets such as property.

EPUTS do not need to be UK Registered – they can be based in Guernsey, Jersey and other well known locations (Barbados for example can offer EPUTS). Sometimes these are referred to as GPUTS, JPUTS and BPUTS to denote their ‘domicile’.

In SSAS planning they are used to hold Property – with the SSAS simply holding the ‘units’ in the EPUT. This enables the EPUT to borrow more than the 50% limit that applies to a SSAS, making larger mortgages possible, which in turn can assist with company cash flow or allow a larger property purchase.

Some planning practitioners use the EPUT to hold residential property – with the units being held within the SSAS.

Whilst this ‘works’ from a Legislative perspective, HMRC might consider this to be ‘avoidance’ as there may be no other commercial reason for adding the EPUT to the planning process. However, there are (as you would expect!) ways to combine the EPUT and SSAS with another structure to make the residential property investment ‘safer’ from HMRC’s viewpoint.

Another aspect of SSAS planning is the Lifetime Limit (£1.07m). With property values increasing rapidly it does not take much for a SSAS value to exceed the Lifetime Limit. Some planners would simply transfer the SSAS to a QROPS (Qualifying Recognised Offshore Pension Scheme) as this would crystallise the value in today’s terms and let all of the growth be ‘outside’ of the Lifetime Limit rules. However there is an even more ta efficient way to work around the Lifetime Limit when using an EPUT and another ‘HMRC’ accepted structure. Indeed this alternative method even allows retirement income to be generated free from income tax, which is not possible with a QROPS.

As with all things – the details matter, as do the tools used. 

We are lucky to be experts in the field of SSAS planning and have all the tools needed to ensure that your investments are as tax efficient as is possible.

Using the right combination can result in 0% tax on investment income, growth and 0% IHT on death.