Beating the Mansion Tax

You can avoid capital-gains tax on a pricey home by moving frequently--or by selling some beaten-down stocks

A growing number of Americans are hitting the road to dodge taxes, and the IRS can't touch them. Why? Far from being on the lam, these tax-wise migrants are changing addresses to take advantage of generous tax laws that apply to the sale of a primary residence. Couples can exclude as much as $500,000 of gain ($250,000 for singles) when selling any house they've lived in for at least two of the previous five years. Thanks to a torrid real estate market, tens, maybe hundreds of thousands of upscale homeowners now sit atop such fat gains. If you're one of them,...

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