Homebuyer tax credit has been primary cause of recent return of buyers to market according to study

Dennis Norman

Dennis Norman

By: Dennis Norman

Results have just been released of a study conducted by Rosen Consulting Group as to the effectiveness of the 2009 first-time-homebuyer tax credit and the potential need for an extension of the credits.

The Rosen Consulting Group was retained by Fix Housing First, a coalition that was originally working to convince Congress for a housing stimulus packagefix-housing-first1 that they feel would have a more significant then what was ultimately passed, and since has been working to get the tax credit extended beyond its current expiration date of November 30, 2009.

The study noted that “facing the most significant economic crisis since World War II, Congress and the White House passed the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 in an effort to provide support to the contracting economy and beleaguered housing market.” Continue reading “Homebuyer tax credit has been primary cause of recent return of buyers to market according to study

First-time homebuyer credit provides tax benefits to 1.4 million familes to date according to the IRS

Dennis Norman

Dennis Norman

By: Dennis Norman

“I’m from the IRS and I’m here to help you.”

Yeah, sure. :)

Actually, in this case the IRS is trying to help. The IRS has a website and has even published a video on YouTube to help first-time buyers and potential buyers understand the first-time home buyer tax credit as well as how to claim the credit.

The IRS issued a notice yesterday reminding potential home buyers they must complete their first-time home purchases before Dec. 1 to qualify for the special first-time home buyer credit. The credit of up to $8,000 is generally available to home buyers with qualifying income levels who have never owned a home or have not owned one in the past three years. Continue reading “First-time homebuyer credit provides tax benefits to 1.4 million familes to date according to the IRS

IRS Warns Taxpayers to Beware of First-Time Homebuyer Credit Fraud

The Internal Revenue Service this week announced its first successful prosecution related to fraud involving the first-time homebuyer credit and warned taxpayers to beware of this type of scheme.

On Thursday July 23, 2009, a Jacksonville, Fla.-tax preparer, James Otto Price III, pled guilty to falsely claiming the first-time homebuyer credit on a client’s federal tax return. Price faces the possibility of up to three years in jail, a fine of as much as $250,000, or both. To date, the IRS has executed seven search warrants and currently has 24 open criminal investigations in pursuit of potential instances of fraud involving the credit.

The agency has a number of sophisticated computer screening tools to quickly identify returns that may contain fraudulent claims for the first-time homebuyer credit. “We will vigorously pursue anyone who falsely tries to claim this or any other tax credit or deduction,” said Eileen Mayer, Chief, IRS Criminal Investigation. “The penalties for tax fraud are steep. Taxpayers should be wary of anyone who promises to get them a big refund.” Whether a taxpayer prepares his or her own return or uses the services of a paid preparer, it is the taxpayer who is ultimately responsible for the accuracy of the return. Fraudulent returns may result not only in the required payment of back taxes but also in penalties and interest.

First-Time Homebuyer Credit

The First-Time Homebuyer Credit, originally passed in 2008 and modified in 2009, provides up to $8,000 for first-time homebuyers. The purchaser, however, must qualify as a first-time homebuyer, which for purposes of this credit means someone who has not owned a primary residence in the past three years. If the taxpayer is married, this requirement also applies to the taxpayer’s spouse. The home purchase must close before Dec. 1, 2009, to qualify, and the credit may not be claimed on the purchaser’s tax return until after the taxpayer closes and has purchased the home.

Different rules apply for homes bought in 2008.

Full details and instructions are available on the official IRS Web site.