Home buyers - how does a $15000 Tax Credit sound? $15000, free money - sounds pretty good, right?
Who knows if it'll actually be there, though.
Let's catch up to speed ... The House has passed a version of the stimulus bill, while the Senate is currently working on their own version. They're supposed to vote on it tomorrow, February 10th, but as of this post I don't know if that'll happen. There's some political wrangling that has to go back and forth, and once that's finished then it's voted on by both the House and the Senate ... again.
But why a stimulus in the first place, and will it even help? Remember - I'm not a lawyer or a CPA, so if you have questions about whether this makes sense for you I'd suggest starting with them FIRST. Then mail me.
The idea is that a tax credit of 10% of a home's purchase price, or a value no greater than $15000, could be written off on your taxes as a credit, thus stimulating buyers to invest in the housing market by purchasing either new homes or homes that are being resold. The original stimulus bill, called the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, said that only $7500 could be applied for as a credit, but this most recent amendment upped that to $15000.
15 grand is a lot of money.I received some emails from first-time buyers late last week that thought it was just a first-time buyer credit, but according to the AP that's not the case. The AP reports "The Senate has voted to award anybody buying a home this year a tax credit worth up to $15000 in hopes of jump-starting the sagging housing market. The homebuyer tax credit offered by GOP Sen. Johnny Isakson would apply to any home purchased as a main residence and would cost taxpayers $19 billion." So it looks as if it's a homebuyer credit and not a first-time buyer credit.
I don't know if this makes a difference overall in the housing market across the country. I know that the New River Valley market is not facing many of the same problems, and I hope to have my 2008 Annual Report out in the next several days. Nevertheless, $15000 is a lot of money to just leave on the table and I think by the response I've gotten from buyers so far, and from what I'm hearing across the country, it's going to make SOME kind of a difference. Make sure to read this report from Calculated Risk on the situation. Jay Thompson also has a good recap.