The first time home buyer tax credit, which equals up to $8,000, is set to expire on November 30, 2009. This is bad news for many who are either waiting on a short sale to be accepted or have not yet decided to purchase their first home. While there has been some talk in Washington about extending the tax credit into next year for now, nothing has been decided. What that means is if you are a first time home buyer and you do not close on your home by November 30, 2009 then you could very well have “lost” up to $8,000 in free money.
But there is some good news! First of all, it’s still not too late. Although the clock is ticking, there is still time to put an offer, have it accepted, and close on the home before the deadline. Of course, you will have to be careful to steer clear of the notoriously delayed short sales and foreclosures and stick with the privately owned homes. Ask your agent to suppress listings that say “short-sale”, “pre-foreclosure”, “REO” or “Bank Owned” and you will end up with a complete list of what is available.
The second part of the good news is that the House has passed legislation allowing an extension on the first time home buyer tax credit through 2010, to Military, Intelligence and Diplomatic Personnel. This extension will only be valid if the purchasers in these categories have been out of the country on active duty for at least 3 months of 2009. Although the legislation has passed the house vote, it still needs to be passed by the Senate before being enacted. So be sure to check back often for updates.