Extended Home Buyer Tax Credit – Time is Running Out!

Last fall, Congress extended the Home Buyer Tax Credit to April 30, 2010 and expanded the program to apply to non-first time homebuyers as well. These buyers are sometimes referred to as “repeat buyers” or “long term residents”.

 Here are some further details on the Extended Home Buyer Tax Credit:

Deadline: All buyers must be under contract to purchase a home by April 30, 2010 and must close on that home by July 1, 2010.

Type of Property: This credit may only be applied to primary residences and can include townhomes, condos and single family homes.

Type of Buyer: In order to qualify as a first time home buyer, buyers cannot have owned a home anytime over the last 3 years. In order to qualify as a ‘repeat buyer’, the current homeowners must have used the home that is being sold as a principal residence for 5 consecutive years within the last 8 years. Additionally, the full credit is only available for taxpayers with a modified adjusted gross income of $125,000 or less.

Tax Credit: The tax credit for first time homebuyers is $8,000 and the tax credit for “long-time residents” is $6,500. Buyers can apply their credit to their 2009 return or apply the credit on their 2010 tax return.

Trivia: For 2008 and so far for 2009 tax year, the IRS reported that 1.763 million tax payers applied for the First Time Home Buyer Credit and received credits of $12.4 billion. (Source: CNBC 03/17/10)

 Time is running out – must be under contract by April 30, 2010.

Check out great Jackson Hole properties offered by Christy & Garth Gillespie at www.jacksonholeexperts.com

Sotheby’s Doing Their Part To Support the Real Estate Industry

Last week Christy and I received an email from Kathy Korte, President and CEO, of Sotheby’s International Realty, updating us on ways the private sector are trying to jumpstart the sluggish housing market. A Business Roundtable was formed and here are the results of that meeting.

Business Roundtable, an association of chief executive officers of leading U.S. corporations and specifically, the Business Roundtable’s Housing Working Group – which is chaired by Realogy CEO Richard A. Smith – issued a set of recommendations for the White House and Congress that are aimed at jumpstarting the housing market in order to stimulate a broader economic recovery.

The Business Roundtable’s recommendations are as follows:
· Keep mortgage interest rates at historically low levels (below 5 percent) for at least one year;
· Expand the current First-Time Homebuyer Tax Credit incentive from the lesser of 10 percent of the purchase price of the home or $8,000 to a higher limit of either 10 percent or $15,000 for all homebuyers, remove the income restrictions and include all primary residence purchases for one full year;
· Conduct a thorough review of current foreclosure mitigation and loan-modification programs in light of rising loan-modification re-default rates;
· Make permanent the current temporary conforming loan limits; and
· Continue to review and strengthen government efforts already underway to review and refine mortgage lending practices.

“We believe targeted, demand-side solutions – such as the ones Business Roundtable is recommending today – will provide a critical next step for a housing recovery that will help create jobs and boost the economy as a whole,” said Smith in the Business Roundtable’s press release.

To obtain a copy of the Business Roundtable press release and its Housing Working Group’s detailed recommendations, click here. To read an article that appeared in today’s online edition of The Wall Street Journal containing an interview with Richard Smith about the Business Roundtable’s recommendations and why they are crucial to jumpstarting the housing market, click here

NRT and The Jackson Hole Experts, Christy and Garth Gillespie, applauds the Business Roundtable for its proactive efforts to reinvigorate the U.S. housing market, and we are proud of the leadership role our parent company, Realogy, has taken in this regard.

For more information on the current housing market here in Jackson Hole please feel free to call at 877-739-8056 or visit us at our website.

First Time Homeowner Tax Credit – Explained – How Does It Help Jackson Hole Homebuyers?

Information about first time home buyer tax credits as amended by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (HR 1).

We highly suggest that you please consult your tax advisor / accountant to determine whether you are eligible for this tax credit before making any decisions or changes to your tax status. This website is for information only and should be verified by a tax professional.

The 3 changes to the first-time home buyers tax credit program include:

Tax credit has been increased to $8,000.
Homes have to be purchased between January 1, 2009 and December 31, 2009
No repayment/recapture clause for homes sold after 36 months of occupancy and ownership.

The Tax Credit is for home buyers (either spouse if filing jointly) who have not owned a principle residence during the three-year period prior to the purchase.

The maximum credit is $8,000 or 10% of the home purchase, whichever is less – not an issue here in Jackson Hole or Teton Valley, Idaho.

The credit is available for homes purchased on or after January 1, 2009 and before December 31, 2009.

To qualify for the full tax credit, married couples’ modified adjusted gross income should be under $150,000 and single filers’ modified adjusted gross income should be less than $75,000. Partial tax credits may be available for married couples with modified adjusted gross incomes of over $150,000 but under $170,000 and single filers with incomes over $75,000 but under $95,000. If married couples who qualify for the first-time tax credit file separately, they would both claim 5% of the home purchase or $4,000 each on their tax returns.

Home buyers who qualify for this program, but who do not intend to purchase a home till the end of 2009, may elect to alter their tax withholdings (up to the amount of the of the tax credit) in order to save up money for a down payment. However, if the purchase of the home does not occur, the taxes must be repaid to the IRS.

There is no recapture or repayment clause IF the home is owned for at least 36 months.

The effective date of purchase for new construction (even if buyer owns title to the lot) is the date the owner first occupies the house. So even if construction began in 2008, as long as the home and buyers qualify for the tax credit, they will be eligible if they take possession any time during 2009. However, new construction bought from the builder is only eligible if the settlement date (closing) takes place between January 1, 2009 and December 31, 2009.

The law allows taxpayers to elect to treat qualified 2009 purchases as a 2008 purchase so that they can receive the tax credit on their 2008 tax returns.

The full amount of the eligible tax credit is refunded to the buyer, regardless of whether the buyer has paid an equivalent amount in taxes.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009

Read more

Housing and the Stimulus Package – Jackson Hole Status Report

February 17, 2009

Christy and Garth Gillespie, the “Jackson Hole Experts” have reviewed the Stimulis Bill and Treasury announcements made last week and being signed today and here are our thoughts.

We were in support for a $15,000 tax credit but that was defeated. We are very excited to report much of what the National Association of REALTORS campaigned for was introduced and kept into the bill and are equally excited to see the already established tax breaks stay in effect.

So here’s what is part of the package: 1) the loan limits will be raised to $727,000 in high cost areas, 2) the tax credit will be raised to $8,000, 3) the bill has over $50 billion in it for foreclosure mitigation, 4) Fannie has just agreed to lift the cap of 4 investment properties eligible for loans and raise it to 10.

In addition, the Government preserved what we have – mortgage interest deductability, real estate tax deductability, and the $250,000/$500,000 cap gains exclusion (an overall package worth more than $100 billion).

We also reviewed where the $727 billion dollar stimulus package was being spent – unfortunately NOT in Teton County, Wyoming or Idaho….

We will continue to update the benefits of the Stimulus Bill as more details are released. For more information on the Jackson Hole Real Estate market please feel free to contact us at 307-739-8056 or send us an email to gillespie@NUMBER1EXPERT.com.

United States Senate Approves $8,000 Tax Credit For Home Buyers -Including Jackson Hole Home Buyers

American flagwater ripple and water drop falling in the middleIf you decide to purchase a home, whether it is in Jackson Hole or not, within the next year, you will be entitled to a $8,000 tax credit, thanks to an amendment written by Georgia’s Senator Johnny Isakson. This amendment to the economic stimulus bill will be available to any home buyer within a year of it’s enactment. Homebuyers will be entitled to claim a total tax credit of $8,000 or 10% of the purchase price, which will not be difficult to do in the Teton County, Wyoming real estate market.  In Teton County our average sale is way over $1,000,000. To avoid possible abuse of this credit, it is only allowed for your primary residence and will only have to be re-paid if said house is sold within two years of purchase.

Isakson has a lot of experience in the Real Estate market, as he ran one of the most successful Real Estate Brokerage companies in the Southeast for twenty years. He is convinced that this credit will work because of a similar tax break Congress introduced in the mid-1970’s, when our country was in the midst of a housing crisis similar to the one we are faced with today. The results back then were positive, as home values did eventually stabilize and the market recovered.

It is our belief that adding this tax credit to the already established benefits to home owership will help to kick start the real estate market in Jackson Hole. We are starting to witness a renewed interest in the market as showings have increased tenfold from November. Offers are still scarce but time is of the essence and Buyers are starting to feel more comfortable with the current market in Jackson Hole. For more information on the real estate market in Jackson Hole please feel free to call Christy and Garth Gillespie, associates at Sotheby’s International Realty of Jackson Hole, at 877-739-8056.