Since my post on the $7,500 tax credit for first-time home buyers has over 225 comments and growing, I thought I should point out that both the current House and Senate versions of the Obama Stimulus bill remove the requirement to pay back the credit over 15 years.
If it becomes law, this will be essentially $7,500 of free money for most first-time home buyers. You’ll have to wait until you file your taxes in 2010 to claim the credit, but you might be able to adjust your tax withholding to improve cashflow until then.
According to this CNN Money article, it will also expand the eligible dates retroactively to January 1st, 2009 until the end of June or August.
To be eligible, buyers cannot have owned a home for the past three years, and the new home has to be used as a primary residence. The credit phases out as income rises above $75,000 for singles and $150,000 for couples, and disappears entirely at $95,000 and $170,000, respectively.
Will this really make a long-term difference?