Property other than your own home
Property other than your own home counts as savings when means-tested benefits are calculated. This means that such property needs to be valued and an amount entered into the calculator.
For the purposes of calculating the amount of that property which counts as 'savings', you should take the current market value ('surrender value') of the property, and reduce the amount by 10% if there would be a cost involved in selling the property. This is because the value of capital taken into account in the means test is reduced by 10% to cover any expenses involved in selling. You should then deduct from the remaining amount any debts secured on the property. The amount left is your 'savings' amount. If there are no selling costs, and no debts secured, then the entire amount is counted as 'savings'.
In some cases the value of property can be disregarded (ignored) from a means tested benefit calculation for a period. In the case of a property for sale it may be disregarded for 26 weeks from the date the property was put for sale, or such a longer period as is reasonable.
In particular cases the value of property can be disregarded (ignored) on a long term basis. For example, the capital value of your former home can be disregarded from a means tested benefit calculation if:
- your former home is occupied by a relative who is incapacitated or over Pension Credit qualifying age
your former home is occupied by your former partner who is a lone parent,
In the cases above the capital value is disregarded for as long as it is occupied by the relative or former partner (while they are a lone parent). There are further disregards and if this applies to you then please contact your Council for advice.
Any capital you own jointly with other people will normally be divided equally between the joint owners. For example, if you and your daughter have a joint property with equity of £18,000, you will be assessed as owning £9,000 of it.