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mbowen815
Returning Member

Capital gains exemption - moving for a job

Hi, we're selling our home due to moving for a new job. We're closing October 8th and will only have owned the house for just over 7 months. I start my job October 7th . Do we qualify for an exemption of capital gains tax? 

2 Replies
maxthetax
Employee Tax Expert

Capital gains exemption - moving for a job

Hi

A new job sounds exciting.  Congratulations!

Of course, the first thing would be determine whether you have a gain.  The fees and closing costs on the home may more than offset any increase in the value since you purchased it.  If the gain is small, you may not wish to elect any exclusion because you can only use it once every two years, so you may want to keep your powder dry.  For example, if you bought the house for $500,000  and sold it for $540,000 and fees and closing costs were $36,000, your gain would be $4,000 ($540,000 minus ($500,000 plus $36,000).  If there’s a chance of another move, you might want to pay the tax on the $4,000.

You may qualify for a part of the exclusion for capital gains on the house.  Let’s assume that you have moved for the new job to live closer to the place you worked.  This is called an unforeseen circumstance and you can claim a partial exclusion.  I assume, when you saw “we”, that you are married filing jointly and both lived in the home.  In that case you can claim an exclusion of 7/24 (7 months / 24 months) of the $500,000 exclusion, or approximately $146,000.

 

I hope this answers the question you were asking.  Once again, congratulations.

Regards

 

maxthetax

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rschule1
Employee Tax Expert

Capital gains exemption - moving for a job

A change in the place of employment for you, your spouse, any co-owner of the property, or any other person who uses your home as his or her principal residence is always a valid excuse if the location of the new job is at least 50 miles further away from your old home. This is the same distance rule that applies for the moving expense deduction. Moves of less than 50 miles could also qualify depending on the circumstances.

 

As previously advised such an excuse will allow for a partial exclusion

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