Tricks to Avoid Tax on Your Home Sale
In most cases, gains from home sales are taxable. But did you know that if you sell your home, you may be able to use some Tricks to Avoid Tax on Your Home Sale? Here are ten facts to keep in mind if you sell your home this year and you want to avoid tax on your home sale.
Exclusion of Gain in order to avoid tax on your home sale.
You may be able to exclude part or all of the gain from the sale of your home. This rule may apply if you meet the eligibility test. Parts of the test involve your ownership and use of the home. You must have owned and used it as your main home for at least two out of the five years before the date of sale in order to avoid tax on your home sale.
Exceptions May Apply.
There are exceptions to the ownership, use, and other rules. One exception applies to persons with a disability. Another applies to certain members of the military. That rule includes certain government and Peace Corps workers. For more information about these exceptions, please call the office.
The most gain you as an individual can exclude from tax is $250,000. This limit is $500,000 for joint returns. The Net Investment Income Tax will not apply to the excluded gain. This is very important as these Obamacare Taxes apply to most high earners. All taxes are bad when you want to avoid tax on your home sale!
May Not Need to Report Sale.
If the gain is not taxable, you may not need to report the sale to the IRS on your tax return.
When You Must Report the Sale.
You must report the sale on your tax return if you can’t exclude all or part of the gain. You must report the sale if you choose not to claim the exclusion. That’s also true if you get Form 1099-S, Proceeds From Real Estate Transactions. If you report the sale, take a look at the Questions and Answers on the Net Investment Income Tax on IRS.gov or call the office. Remember! The point is to avoid tax on your home sale … regardless of the type of tax!
Exclusion Frequency Limit.
Generally, you may exclude the gain from the sale of your main home only once every two years. Some exceptions may apply to this rule.
Only a Main Home Qualifies.
If you own more than one home, you may only exclude the gain on the sale of your main home. Your main home usually is the home that you live in most of the time. Some planning is necessary in order to avoid tax on your home sale if you have multiple homes.
First-time Homebuyer Credit.
If you claimed the first-time homebuyer credit when you bought the home, special rules apply to the sale. For more on those rules, please call.
Home Sold at a Loss.
If you sell your main home at a loss, you can’t deduct the loss on your tax return.
Report Your Address Change.
After you sell your home and move, update your address with the IRS. To do this, file Form 8822, Change of Address. You can find the address to send it to in the form’s instructions on page two. If you purchase health insurance through the Health Insurance Marketplace, you should also notify the Marketplace when you move out of the area covered by your current Marketplace plan.
Questions? Help is just a phone call away.