Capital Gains: How much will I pay from selling a home I’ve rented out?

If you turn a profit by selling your home, the first $250,000 of that profit will be excluded from your taxable income. (That’s per owner. So for a co-owning couple the first $500K would be excluded).  Yay! But what about if you rented it out for a while before selling?  If you lived in the house for two out of the five years before the sale, the exclusion will still stand.  Any profit above that exclusion will be taxed at capital gains rate.  

(Renting property triggers other tax rules, though, so you may want to consult a tax professional.)

A large profit could affect you in ways other than taxation, though.  For example if you are a Medicare recipient, your premium might temporarily go up if your profit exceeds the exclusion amount. This is because individuals who earn more than $87K per year (or married couples who earn more than $174K) are subject to an income-related “monthly adjustment”.  So again, it’s best to seek out a tax professional:  He or she might be able to structure the sale to lessen the impact on your income in that year.

For more information, read Liz Weston’s complete article:

Q&A: Avoiding capital gains