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I am going to be out of the U.S. for 18 months. My sister will

be living in and caretaking...
I am going to be out of the U.S. for 18 months. My sister will be living in and caretaking my home in my absence. Would the home in the IRS's eyes still be owner occupied during the time my sister is living in it?
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Answered in 2 minutes by:
9/4/2013
Megan C
Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 16,581
Experience: Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA, CGMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level
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MyVirtualCPA :

Hello! I am a CPA here to assist you with your tax questions. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today.

MyVirtualCPA :

How are you today?

MyVirtualCPA :

This is still your primary residence, as you are going away for a temporary absence and plan on coming back home

MyVirtualCPA :

So, this would still be your primary residence and you could still write off your mortgage interest and real estate taxes

Customer:

I need to know that if, upon returning home, I decide to sell my house if I would be able to receive the tax exclusion on the gain.

MyVirtualCPA :

Unfortunately, this would not qualify as a short temporary absence

MyVirtualCPA :

You would not be able to count those months as being owner occupied.

MyVirtualCPA :

See publication 523

MyVirtualCPA :

http://www.irs.gov/publications/p523/ar02.html

Customer:

In order to get a tax exclusion on the gain on the home, the home has to be owner occupied two of the last five years. I have rented the house out and now might want to sell it upon my return. I know that a family member living in the home qualifies the home as being owner occupied. Would my sister's residence in the home qualify?

MyVirtualCPA :

I am sorry to see you rated my service as "poor" as I have not completed answering your question

Customer:

Please then I await your reply.

MyVirtualCPA :

Yes, your sister's occupancy in the house would keep it qualified as "owner occupied" and therefore when you return home you would

MyVirtualCPA :

be able to exclude the gain

Customer:

Can you direct me to an IRS bulletin that would assure me that her occupancy would allow that?

MyVirtualCPA :

I do not have a publication that states that explicitly

Customer:

Can you tell me where I can read this information?

MyVirtualCPA :

You can read about the sale of your home in publication 523

MyVirtualCPA :

Do you need any further assistance with this?

Customer:

Where do I locate publication 523?

MyVirtualCPA :

http://www.irs.gov/publications/p523

Customer:

Thank you.

Megan C
Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 16,581
Experience: Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA, CGMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level
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Thanks Margy for your positive rating. Please come back and visit MyVirtualCPA for any of your tax, finance, or social security needs. It was a pleasure working with you.

Upon further review of publication 523, I do not see mention of allowing your sister to live there to exclude the gain. It would only apply to a spouse - therefore your gain would not be able to be excluded. Thanks again.
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Megan C
Megan C
Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
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