The House of Representatives on Thursday approved an extension of jobless benefits and a tax credit for home buyers, sending the measure to President Barack Obama for signature. The bill, approved unanimously by the Senate late Wednesday, keeps a first-time home buyer tax credit alive until next spring, and expands it to include some people who already own a house.
Tax credit: Ten percent of the purchase price of a primary residence, up to a maximum of $8,000 for first-time homebuyers and $6,500 for repeat buyers. First-time homebuyers are defined as people who have not owned a home in the previous three years. Repeat buyers must have owned their current home at least five years. The credit cannot be used for houses costing more than $800,000.
Deadline for qualifying: Purchase agreements must be signed by April 30, 2010, and closings must be final by June 30.
Military deadline: The deadline is extended by a year for members of the military who have served outside the U.S. for at least 90 days from Jan. 1, 2009, to May 1, 2010.
Income limits: Individuals with annual incomes up to $125,000 and joint filers with incomes up to $225,000 qualify for the full credit. Individuals with incomes up to $145,000 and joint filers with incomes up to $245,000 qualify for reduced credits.
How to apply: Taxpayers can claim the credit on their federal income tax returns. If the credit exceeds their tax bill, the government will issue a payment. Taxpayers who want immediate refunds can amend their tax returns for 2008 to claim the credit.
Joseph Metzler, MMS, UMB
33 Wentworth Ave E #290
West St Paul, MN 55118
Ph: (651) 552-3681
Cell: (651) 592-4460
Fax: (651) 994-6425