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It is possible to get the $250k exclusion for separate sales of the land and house. The sales need to happen fairly close together (I don't recall what exactly is close enough - possibly as long as 2 years). If the land sells first - as appears to be the case here - you can't take the exclusion on the land alone. Once the house sells, you get the exclusion on the house and if there is any additional exclusion available, it can be applied to the land sale on an amended return.

I think this situation is covered in IRS Pub 523.

--Peter
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