The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 authorizes a tax credit of up to $8,000 for qualified first-time home buyers purchasing a principal residence on or after January 1, 2009 and before December 1, 2009.
The following questions and answers provide basic information about the tax credit. If you have more specific questions, we strongly encourage you to consult a qualified tax advisor or legal professional about your unique situation.
Who is eligible to claim the tax credit?
First-time home buyers purchasing any kind of home—new or resale—are eligible for the tax credit. To qualify for the tax credit, a home purchase must occur on or after January 1, 2009 and before December 1, 2009. For the purposes of the tax credit, the purchase date is the date when closing occurs and the title to the property transfers to the home owner.
What is the definition of a first-time home buyer?
The law defines “first-time home buyer” as a buyer who has not owned a principal residence during the three-year period prior to the purchase. For married taxpayers, the law tests the homeownership history of both the home buyer and his/her spouse.
For example, if you have not owned a home in the past three years but your spouse has owned a principal residence, neither you nor your spouse qualifies for the first-time home buyer tax credit. However, unmarried joint purchasers may allocate the credit amount to any buyer who qualifies as a first-time buyer, such as may occur if a parent jointly purchases a home with a son or daughter. Ownership of a vacation home or rental property not used as a principal residence does not disqualify a buyer as a first-time home buyer.
Below are some tips provided by the US Government to help reduce the impact of our consumption of the Earth’s resources as well as ways to save energy, and ultimately money, on your home’s energy bills.
- Use the ENERGY STAR program (energystar.gov) to find energy efficient products for your home. The right choices can save families about 30% ($700 a year) while reducing our emissions of greenhouse gases. Whether you are looking to replace old appliances, remodel, or buy a new house, ENERGY STAR can help. ENERGY STAR is the government backed symbol for energy efficiency. The ENERGY STAR label makes it easy to know which products to buy without sacrificing features, style or comfort that today’s consumers expect.
- Turn off appliances and lights when you leave the room.
- Use the microwave to cook small meals. (It uses less power than an oven.)
- Purchase “Green Power” for your home’s electricity. (Contact your power supplier to see where and if it is available.)
- Have leaky air conditioning and refrigeration systems repaired.
- Use a programmable thermostat to save on heating and cooling costs when you’re not home.
- Insulate your home, water heater and pipes.
- Keep in mind that every trip adds to air pollution. Learn more atIt All Adds Up to Cleaner Air(http://www.italladdsup.gov).
- Replace incandescent light bulbs with ENERGY STAR qualified Compact Fluorescent Light bulbs (CFL). If every household in the U.S. replaced one light bulb with a CFL, it would prevent enough pollution to equal removing one million cars from the road. (energystar.gov/cfls)
Thank you to all of our clients for making The Northrop Team the #1 sales team in Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc (the largest privately owned real estate company in the country) for the 6th year in a row!
In addition to being #1 in Long & Foster, we were also awarded:
- #1 Listing team for 2008
- #1 for Most Homes Sold in the Company (units) for 2008
- #1 for Most Volume Sold in the Companyfor 2008
- #1 for most New Homes Sold in the Company for 2008 (a brand new recognition)
We look forward to serving all of your real estate needs in the future.
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