I'm considering selling two rental properties, and am trying to understand what taxes I will owe. I think I need to hire an accountant.

Both of the properties have accumulated about $40k of depreciation since becoming rentals, and my understanding is that all of that is taxed upon sale at ordinary income tax rates (capped at 25%). So in theory, if I earned $40k at a W-2 job this year and then sold a house with $40k of depreciation recapture, I would end up paying income taxes on $80k. If I was filing MFJ, I would get to take the $24k standard deduction and then would pay ordinary income taxes on the remaining $56k in the 10% and 12% tax brackets. That works out to $1940+$4392 is $6,332 in income taxes.

Property 1 has about $100k in capital gains. If I'm doing this right, then the LTCG rate is 0% on gains up to ~$79k (again assuming MFJ) so at the very least we'd pay the 15% LTCG rate on the remaining $21k, or an additional $3188 in long term capital gains.

So when we file taxes next year, we'd owe $6,332 in income taxes due in part to the additional "income" from depreciation recapture, and then we'd also ow the $3,188 in LTCG, for a total tax bill of $9,520 (assuming no other complicating factors like child tax credits, RE excise tax, etc.)

I know some of you are far smarter about this kind of thing than I am. Have I totally fucked that up?

Because one obvious consequence of this math is that it seems to make a lot more sense to sell a rental property in a year in which you have no W-2 income, so that you can use the standard deduction to offset the first $24k of depreciation recapture from each property separately. Another obvious consequence is that it would suck to sell both rental properties in the same tax year, because the tax brackets are progressive for both the depreciation recapture side and the LTCG side. Doing both in one year would put the majority of my LTCG into the 15% tax bracket, where it would mostly be in the 0% bracket if I sold one house per year.

Some of you are actually CPAs. Do I need to hire a CPA to work through this math, or am I on the right track by myself? If I do go hire an accountant, what questions do I need to ask?