Monthly Archives: November 2009

Federal Tax Credit Extended!!!!!

LOS ANGELES (Nov. 5) – The CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (C.A.R.) today commended Congress and the Senate for its swift actions in extending and expanding the provisions of the Federal Tax Credit for First-time Home Buyers. The U.S. House of Representatives earlier today voted 403 to 12 for passage, as did the U.S. Senate late yesterday. The legislation now goes to President Obama for signature.

“Over the past several months, C.A.R., the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (NAR), and our more than 1.2 million members have repeatedly urged congressional representatives to extend and expand this crucial piece of legislation,” said C.A.R. President James Liptak. “Today’s victory for home buyers also is testament to the role REALTORS® can play when they unite for a worthy goal.

“Although ideally the legislation sent to President Obama would have applied to all home buyers, C.A.R. applauds our federal representatives for realizing the benefits of the federal tax credit and the role it has played in the ongoing economic recovery,” Liptak said. “More than 1.4 million first-time home buyers nationwide were eligible for the initial credit. We expect that number to increase dramatically in the months ahead once this new legislation is in place.”

As it now stands, the federal tax credit will be extended through April 30, 2010, with a 60-day extension if a binding contract is in place prior to the deadline. First-time home buyers will continue to be eligible for a tax credit of up to $8,000, while existing homeowners will be eligible for a reduced credit of up to $6,500. To qualify for the $6,500 credit, existing homeowners must have lived in their current residences for at least five years. The bill also increases the qualifying income limits from $75,000 for single tax filers and $150,000 for joint filers to $125,000 and $225,000, respectively. The purchase price of the home is capped at $800,000 in both instances.

Under additional provisions included in the bill, taxpayers can claim the credit on purchases completed in 2010 on their 2009 income tax returns. The legislation maintains the provision that home buyers do not have to repay the credit provided the home remains their primary residence for 36 months after purchase, and waives this requirement for active duty military personnel who move due to a military order.

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Federal Tax Report
Extending the Credit — Almost There

The extension and expansion of the homebuyer tax credit is the pending business in the Senate. After a long week of negotiation on the credit, an agreement on the scope of both expansion and extension has been reached. The extension is part of a larger bill that has not yet gone to a vote, however. A Senate vote on the underlying bill will occur in the Senate during the week of November 1. The package will then go back to the House. The House is expected to accept the Senate amendments, vote on the package and send it to the President for signature. The underlying bill is an extension of unemployment benefits. Other provisions in the bill include expansion of the net operating loss carryback rules, new requirements for some tax return preparers and noncontroversial provisions that “pay for” these changes.

The agreement on the extension and expansion of the credit is as follows:
Credit available for purchases before May 1, 2010. Prospective purchasers with binding contracts in place as of April 30, 2010 will be allowed an additional 60 days to complete the transaction.
Credit remains at $8000 for first-time purchasers. No change to definition of first-time purchaser.
New $6500 tax credit for repeat buyers who purchase between December 1, 2009 and May 1, 2010. Repeat buyers must have lived in their homes consecutively for 5 of the previous 8 years.
Income limits are expanded to $125,000 on a single return and $225,000 on a joint return. Current law $20,000 phase-out retained.
New anti-fraud limitations are imposed.
The White House has indicated that President Obama will sign the legislation.

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