Part of the Publication 523 from the IRS guides on Capitol Gains states the following:

"If you were ever away from home, you need to determine whether that time counts towards your residence requirement. A vacation or other short absence counts as time you lived at home (even if you rented out your home while you were gone)."

The problem: The IRS doesn't define a "short absence" or exactly what that means. Should we count our summers away (usually 4 months) as primary residence time? Or, is that a huge stretch? We spend every summer traveling other states + a lot of abroad time (in a sailboat, on the ocean full time) last year.

The IRS doesn't consider our boat or RV a home at all. We "HAVE" to have an address and location where we claim income. Seems logical to me, that the house was our residency except maybe while we were sailing - since we never returned?

  • 1
    I don't know the answer but 26 CFR § 1.121-1(b)(1) says "A property used by the taxpayer as the taxpayer's residence may include a houseboat, a house trailer, or the house or apartment" law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/26/1.121-1
    – base64
    May 27 '20 at 3:14
  • @base64 Right... but would assume that does not mean while it spends 7 months bouncing around the Atlantic in multiple different countries. Same goes for trailer/RV. Not like we use it in the spirit of what 1.121-1(b)(1) is talking about.
    – maplemale
    May 28 '20 at 17:03

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