As 2009 comes to a close, we want to share plenty of good news with you on the residential real estate front.
First, we are thrilled to see the federal government pass the extension and the enhancements to the home buyer’s tax credit. This will significantly help the real estate market lead the economy into stronger times. To summarize the new program:
- First-time buyers are eligible for up to an $8,000 credit and now have until April 30, 2010 to be under contract (and close by June 30, 2010).
- Repeat buyers who have lived in their current home for at least five consecutive years of the past eight years are eligible for a tax credit up to $6,500.
- Higher income limits – Both first-timers and repeat buyers may purchase a principal residence up to $800,000. Income limits to qualify have been increased to $125,000 for single tax filers and $225,000 for joint filers.
- Credits are effective NOW – The new legislation replaces the former tax credit scheduled to expire November 30.
- Credits do not need to be repaid – The credits for both first-time buyers and repeat buyers are true credits and do not need to be repaid unless the home is sold within three years of purchase. The credits are claimed on the buyer’s federal income tax return filed for the year they purchase their home.
- Interest rates are still historically low and selection is excellent. The rates are likely to rise in March when the Feds will pull back on the purchase of mortgage-based securities. Act now to lock in those low rates.
The Lee Ann Miller Team