http://danvillesanramon.com/print/story/print/2009/07/31/1st-time-home-buyers-face-dec-1-deadline-for-tax-credit


DanvilleSanRamon.com

Real Estate - July 31, 2009

1st-time home buyers face Dec. 1 deadline for tax credit

Couples earning under $150,000 eligible in government program

by Jeb Bing

Local consumers hoping to own their first home still have time to take advantage of an unprecedented $8,000 tax credit that can also be used for their down payment, officials with Hometown GMAC Real Estate said today.

"For people who have been waiting and hoping to buy their first home, there's literally never been a better year to do so than 2009," Mike Peel of Hometown GMAC Real Estate said. "The $8,000 federal tax credit, combined with still-low interest rates, a great selection of homes on the market and motivated sellers, have created an ideal climate for realizing the dream of home ownership."

Offered through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, the one-time $8,000 tax credit is available to first-time home buyers who purchase a new or resale house. "That's the good news," Peel said. "The not-so-good news is that time is quickly running out: The tax credit expires December 1 of this year, so first-time buyers thinking about taking the plunge really should get serious now, to give themselves time to find the perfect home."

Peel said that the government has made claiming the tax credit easy: Home buyers simply claim it on their federal income tax return or they can apply it to their down payment. And the credit is available to a wide income range: up to $75,000 for single taxpayers, and up to

$150,000 for married taxpayers filing a joint return. (Detailed information is available at www.federalhousingtaxcredit.com.)

"First-time homebuyers are an extremely important part of our local market here in Pleasanton, and they're the ones who will benefit the most by this unusual tax credit," Peel said.

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