Sold house at a loss? You still have to report it in ITR


By Chirag Nangia

I am a pensioner with income below Rs 5 lakh. Last year, I sold a residential property which was purchased in 2015. There was no capital gains in the transaction as the value of the property had fallen. Do I need to file an ITR?
—Kamal Awasti
While filing a return of income one must disclose income from all sources, irrespective of the amount, else at the time of processing of return, the tax department could raise a question or make adjustment on account of mismatch. You may declare your income from pension and capital gains in ITR 2, which is a simple form. You shall be required to disclose the sale consideration, cost of acquisition and the resultant capital gains on account of sale of property.

I am applying for an education loan for my daughter from a non-banking finance company. Will I get tax benefits on this loan?
—Arvind Gaur
As per Section 80E, any individual who takes a loan from any financial institution or approved charitable institution for pursuing higher education, whether in India or abroad, can claim deduction on the amount of interest paid for a consecutive period of eight years, beginning from the assessment year in which he has started paying the interest on loan or until the assessment year in which the interest is paid in full, whichever is earlier. Education loan can be taken for self, spouse, children or student for whom you are the legal guardian.

I am joining a new job in Bangalore and will have to stay on rent for some time till I get office accommodation. How can I claim HRA benefits?
—Harpreet Singh
As per the income tax provisions, the least of the following is allowed as exemption in respect of HRA (i) an amount equal to 40% of salary (50%, if house is situated at Bombay, Kolkata, Delhi or Chennai) (ii) HRA received by the employee in respect of the period during which rental accommodation is occupied by the employee during the previous year (iii) the excess of rent paid over 10% of salary. You must calculate the amount of exempt HRA based on actual rent for the period during which the allowance is received.

The writer is director, Nangia Andersen India. Send your queries to


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