I just got bitten byt the way you verify whether the home folder is accessible:
My home is a SSHFS and the local guid does not match the remote st_uid returned by stat() so pulseaudio won't start even though the home folder is perfectly accessible.
IMHO The best way to test if a home folder is accessible is to actually write and read from it, instead of trusting stat().
Happy to test the changes you may make.
There have been problems in the past with root overwriting things in user directories when using sudo, which makes me think that it's best to not blindly write stuff to other users' directories.
SSHFS seems to support uid/gid mapping, would that solve your problem? See the idmap, uidfile, gidfile and nomap options: https://linux.die.net/man/1/sshfs
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