Senate Passes Key Amendment to Extend Closing Deadline for Homebuyer Tax Credit

UPDATE-July 1- GOOD NEWS!  I Stand Corrected!  Yesterday, before ending session, the Senate did PASS H.R. 5623 by Unanimous Consent…the bill now goes to the President for his signature and then will extend the closing date until September 30th…


Dennis Norman

UPDATE-June 30th-As the Willie Nelson song goes. “Turn out the lights, the party’s over”….well at least for now…Today, the last day the Senate is in session before the 4th of July break, there was yet another motion for cloture (to end debate) on H.R. 4213 and once again, like the previous 2 or 3 attempts, the motion was rejected….The Senate is now on recess until July 12th so nothing is going to happen at least until then….there is still hope with H.R. 5623 …for updates on that bill click here

UPDATE-June 29th – Today the House passed a new stand-alone bill that would extend the closing date for tax credit deals until September 30th…for complete details and future updates on this bill see post by clicking here.

UPDATE-June 28th- While I’m not aware of anything new happening on this in the Senate, I did a press release a little while ago from the National Association of REALTORS which stated if the closing date deadline for tax credits is not extended then up to 180,000 home buyers will lose their tax credit through no fault of their own….this would include buyers in every single state. NAR is strongly urging the Senate and the House to act quickly to pass the legislation to permit the extension…let’s hope they are listening…

UPDATE-June 24th-10:25 pm- Well, so much for my prediction (guess)….The Senate did not make any real progress today on this….there was a motion to end debate on the bill with the Baucus amendment but it did not pass…so at this point, nothing….

UPDATE – June 24th – yesterday there was a vote in the Senate to table the motion to concur on the Baucus amendment (S.AMDT 4369-This has the closing extension in it) that passed which essentially put it out to pasture at that point…However, Sen Reid introduced for Sen Baucus S.AMDT 4386 which also extends the closing date to on or before September 30th in it… Later in the day there was a motion for cloture on the amendment that passed, therefore ending debate on the motion….It is on the calendar today to be taken up so my guess is (and this is just a guess) is they will pass the bill today with the new Baucus amendment…-end of update.

Yesterday I wrote about the possibility of Congress extending the deadline to close on a purchase of a home for the home-buyer tax credit as a result of a Senate Amendment 4344 proposed by Harry Reid to amend Senate Amendment 4301 which amends H.R. 4213. Wow, did you follow all that? The bottom line is the Senate amendments would add to the House Bill that passed an extension of the deadline for purchasers to close on a home purchase to September 30 to qualify for the home-buyer tax credit. It is IMPORTANT to note that this DOES NOT change the deadline of April 30th to have entered into a contract to purchase a home…so if you haven’t bought yet, it’s still too late to get the credit. However, if you are one of the people that did buy but are struggling to get the purchase closed by June 30th to claim your credit, you may be in luck!


Yesterday in the Senate, the underlying amendment, Senate Amendment 4301 was withdrawn however Senator Reid changed his amendment to amend Senate Amendment 4369 (Sen. Baucus) instead. The good news is Senator Reids amendment 4344 did in fact pass yesterday by a vote of 60 to 37 (60 is the minimum number of votes needed to pass). Note, the underlying amendment, Senate Amendment 4369 by Senator Baucus has not passed yet. It is being discussed today in the Senate and if it ultimately passes, it will still require the House of Representatives to accept the Senates amendments to H.R. 4213 before this would be sent to President Obama to sign into law. Therefore, while this is a positive step toward getting the closing date extended, we are not there yet.

I’ll keep following the issue and update this blog as needed.

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