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ragemedia
New Member

Do I have to close on the exact date 2 years later to avoid Capital Gains tax

We closed on our current house Jan 15th, 2016, we are scheduled to sell this house on Jan 2nd, 2018.  This house has been our primary residence the entire time we have owned it.  Do we need to see if we can push closing to the 15th 2018 or will the capital gains tax not apply because we have used this address for two congruent years on our taxes.
8 Replies
DoninGA
Level 15

Do I have to close on the exact date 2 years later to avoid Capital Gains tax

You need to have lived in the home as your personal primary residence for a total of 730 days during the 5 year period from the date of purchase to avoid capital gains.

See IRS Publication 523 Selling Your Home page 3 - https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p523.pdf#page=3

jodonnelly
Level 2

Do I have to close on the exact date 2 years later to avoid Capital Gains tax

I realize this is an old post but hoping someone has some insight on this. We closed on our house 6/30/2020 and we are selling our house 6/30/2022. We purposely did this to meet the 2 year mark to avoid capital gains tax. Will exactly two years avoid this tax or should we push closing to 7/1/2022?

NCperson
Level 15

Do I have to close on the exact date 2 years later to avoid Capital Gains tax

the IRS guide simply states 'at least 24 months" 

 

https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p523.pdf

 

right side of page 3

 

Eligibility Step 2—Ownership
Determine whether you meet the ownership requirement. If you owned the home for at least 24 months (2
years) out of the last 5 years leading up to the date of sale (date of the closing), you meet the ownership requirement. 

 

personally, if it were me, and it didn't upset the deal, I'd push it to July 1st to be safe.  

 

 

Carl
Level 15

Do I have to close on the exact date 2 years later to avoid Capital Gains tax

I concur with @NCperson and would push it to July 1st to be safe.

Keep in mind that if you establish your "new" residence before the closing date of the old one, I don't know what consequences that will have for causing issues should you be audited on this matter. Typically, you move out of the old residence a few days before you actually sell it, at the least. But most home sales I'm aware of, the property was vacated by the owner a month or more before the sale so that the property is clean and empty for showings.

jodonnelly
Level 2

Do I have to close on the exact date 2 years later to avoid Capital Gains tax

Thanks! We’re going to close July 1st, just to be safe. 

jodonnelly
Level 2

Do I have to close on the exact date 2 years later to avoid Capital Gains tax

We’re going to close on July 1st to be safe. We close on our new house on July 1st as well, so shouldn’t be any issues with moving. Thank you for your thoughts! 

Mike9241
Level 15

Do I have to close on the exact date 2 years later to avoid Capital Gains tax

you are not deemed to own your house on the date is is sold so your ownership would be 6/30/2020 through 6/29/2022

That's 729 days 1 day short of the 730 required and if using months you probably didn't own it for 24 full months. close on 7/1/2022

jodonnelly
Level 2

Do I have to close on the exact date 2 years later to avoid Capital Gains tax

That makes sense. Thanks for your input, definitely closing 7/1! 

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