Posts Tagged ‘credit’

California Real Estate buyer tax credit

March 3, 2010

H.R. 3548 provides both for the extension of the first-time homebuyer tax credit and expansion of it to qualified non-first-time buyers as well.  A few of the provisions of this new law include the following: 

(1)  Both the $8,000 first-time homebuyer tax credit and the $6,500 tax credit for “move-up” buyers (see 4 below) would sunset on April 30, 2010. However, purchasers who have binding contracts as of April 30, 2010 (before May 1, 2010), would still qualify for the credit as long as they complete the transaction within 60 days (or June 30, 2010).

(2)  The amendment establishes income limits of $125,000 for an individual or $225,000 for a couple for both credits.

(3)  The cost of the home being purchased cannot exceed $800,000 for both categories in order to be eligible for the credit. 

(4)  “Move up” buyers (an individual or his/her spouse, if married) are qualified if he/she “has owned and used the same residence as such individual’s principal residence for any 5-consecutive-year period during the 8-year period ending on the date of the purchase of a subsequent principal residence.”

For purchases made in 2010, taxpayers would be able to claim the credit on their 2009 income tax return. Homebuyers would not have to repay the credit, provided the home remains their principal residence for 36 months after the purchase date. However, this recapture provision would not apply in the case of a member of the Armed Forces, military intelligence or Foreign Service who is on qualified official extended duty. In addition, members of the military who have been deployed overseas for 90 days or more in 2008 or 2009 would have until April 30, 2011, to claim the homebuyer tax credit.

The amendment also includes anti-fraud language that gives the IRS the authority to do greater oversight during the processing of the return rather than waiting for an audit situation. The amendment requires the taxpayer claiming the credit to be 18 or older and requires a HUD-1 settlement statement to be attached when claiming the credit.

Real Estate Buyer’s 10 Commandments

October 7, 2009

1.  Thou shalt not change jobs, become self-employed or quit your job.

2.  Thou shalt not buy a car, truck or van (or you may be living in it).

3.  Thou shalt not use charge cards excessively or let your accounts fall behind.

4.  Thou shalt not spend money you have set aside for a down payment and closing fees.

5.  Thou Lola and meshalt not omit debts or liabilities on your loan application.

6.  Thou shalt not buy furniture.

7.   Thou shalt not originate any inquiries into your credit.

8.  Thou shalt not make large deposits without first checking with your loan officer.

9.  Thou shalt not change/close bank accounts.

10. Thou shalt not co-sign for anyone.  You may become responsible for the debt.

Should Tax Credit be Extended?

September 24, 2009

I believe the tax credit should be extended as it has juLola and mea REMAX logomp started  the real estate market.  Whenever we are in a recession, real estate  always leads the way toward recovery. 

You may not know, the First-Time Homebuyer Tax Credit has had a positive impact on our market this year. Over a third of all sales have been to First-Time Homebuyers, and research shows that each home sold puts about $60,000 into the local economy. A great return on the government’s investment.

 The Tax Credit has been beneficial and it needs to be extended. It would also be helpful to expand the credit to include all homebuyers. In normal times, we would not favor such government involvement, but these are not normal times. I feel strongly that such Tax Credits will not only help stabilize housing prices, but will help us from falling back into recession.

I am backkkkk

August 20, 2009



Have you missed me?  It has been a hectic 3 months.  I finally closed on the short sale last week.  That took eight months, whew!  Glad that’s over, so is my client.  A lot of blood, sweat and tears.  Now I just put another one into escrow.  I hope that does not last eight months.  Here is some news about the tax credit:

This from the Los Angeles Times:

 Start house-hunting now to qualify for tax credit for first-time home buyers

First-time homebuyers—those who have not owned a home for at least three years—may be eligible for the $8,000 federal tax credit, but the window of opportunity is closing rapidly.  To qualify for the credit, the buyer must close escrow by midnight on Nov. 30, when the tax credit expires.  Buyers hoping to take advantage of this benefit are advised to start house-hunting early, as the buying and lending processes takes time.

e you missed me? It has been a hectic 3 months. I finally closed on the short sale last week. That took eight months, whew! Glad that’s over, so is my client. A lot of blood, sweat and tears. Now I just put another one into escrow. i hope that does not last eight months. Here is some news about the tax credit:

This from the Los Angeles Times: Start house-hunting now to qualify for tax credit for first-time home buyers First-time homebuyers—those who have not owned a home for at least three years—may be eligible for the $8,000 federal tax credit, but the window of opportunity is closing rapidly. To qualify for the credit, the buyer must close escrow by midnight on Nov. 30, when the tax credit expires. Buyers hoping to take advantage of this benefit are advised to start house-hunting early, as the buying and lending processes takes time.

Playa del Rey Beach House Comes up for Sale

June 24, 2009

It’s summertime and the livin; is easy.  Walk to the beach and surf all day with friends and family, head back and have a cocktail in your relaxing backyard.  Everyone is mingling in your beautiful remodeled kitchen with center isle and granite counters, which looks at the fireplace and dining room.  Children are running in and out and playing on the wood floors, everyone’s dogs are rough housing and happy to be with their family.  As the evening cool air arrives, you light the fireplace in the living room and master bedroom.   This warms up the crowd as they dine under the moonlit sky.  Old friends are mingling and catching up on their lives.   Teenagers are crammed  into the loft of the guest house whispering their secrets.  Giggles and laughter waft through the night air.   This couldn’t get any better.

For more info on this  Playa del Rey home contact Donna Benton-RE/MAX Westside Properties 310-398-2332.             License #00983738     

3 bedrooms, 2.25 baths, guest house


$8,000 Tax Credit Toward Purchase of New Home

May 29, 2009

a REMAX logoDONOVAN ANNOUNCES RECOVERY ACT’S HOMEBUYER TAX CREDIT CAN IMMEDIATELY HELP THOUSANDS OF FIRST-TIME HOMEBUYERS TO BUY A HOME FHA plan will stimulate new home sales and help stabilize housing market WASHINGTON – Speaking to the National Association of Home Builders Spring Board of Directors Meeting, U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan today announced that the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) will allow homebuyers to apply the Obama Administration’s new $8,000 first-time homebuyer tax credit toward the purchase costs of a FHA-insured home. Donovan said that today’s action will help stabilize the nation’s housing market by stimulating home sales across the country. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 offers homebuyers a tax credit of up to $8,000 for purchasing their first home. Families can only access this credit after filing their tax returns with the IRS. Today’s announcement details FHA’s rules allowing state Housing Finance Agencies and certain non-profits to “monetize” up to the full amount of the tax credit (depending on the amount of the mortgage) so that borrowers can immediately apply the funds toward their down payments. Home buyers using FHA-approved lenders can apply the tax credit to their down payment in excess of 3.5 percent of appraised value or their closing costs, which can help achieve a lower interest rate. To read the FHA’s new mortgagee letter, visit HUD’s website. “We believe this is a real win for everyone,” said Donovan. “Today, the Obama Administration is taking another important step toward accelerating the recovery of the nation’s housing market. Families will now be able to apply their anticipated tax credit toward their home purchase right away. At the same time we are putting safeguards in place to ensure that consumers will be protected from unscrupulous lenders. What we’re doing today will not only help these families to purchase their first home but will present an enormous benefit for communities struggling to deal with an oversupply of housing.” Currently, borrowers applying for an FHA-insured mortgage are required to make a minimum 3.5 percent downpayment on the purchase of their home. Current law does not permit approved lenders to monetize the tax credit to meet the required 3.5 percent minimum down payment, but, under the terms of today’s announcement, lenders can now monetize the tax credit for use as additional down payment, or for other closing costs, which can help achieve a lower interest rate. Buyers financing through state Housing Finance Agencies and certain non-profits will be able to use the tax credit for their downpayments via secondary financing provided by the HFA or non-profit. In addition to the borrower’s own cash investment, FHA allows parents, employers and other governmental entities to contribute towards the downpayment. Today’s action permits the first-time homebuyer’s anticipated tax credit under the Recovery Act to be applied toward the family’s home purchase right away. Unlike seller-funded down-payment assistance, which was a vehicle for abuse, this program will allow homebuyers to shop for the best home price and services using their anticipated tax credit. According to estimates by the National Association of Home Builders, the Administration’s homebuyer tax credit will stimulate 160,000 home sales across the nation – 101,000 of which will be first-time buyers who will receive the credit. Another 59,000 existing homeowners will be able to buy another home because a first-time buyer purchased their home. Given FHA’s current market share, it’s estimated that thousands of families will be able to purchase a home by allowing the anticipated tax credit to be applied toward their purchase together with an FHA-insured mortgage. Homebuyers should beware of mortgage scams and carefully compare benefits and costs when seeking out tax credit monetization services. Programs will vary from organization to organization and borrowers should consider whether the services make sense for them, as well as what company offers the most suitable and affordable option. For every FHA borrower who is assisted through the tax credit program, FHA will collect the name and employer identification number of the organization providing the service as well as associated fees and charges. FHA will use this information to track the business closely and will refer any questionable practices to the appropriate regulatory agencies, as necessary.

Improve your credit

May 27, 2009

a REMAX logo1. Get a Copy of Your Credit Report

Although you can’t get your exact credit score for free, you can get a free copy of your credit report from each of the three credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax and TransUnion) once each year. To do so, visit and request a report.

This is actually the only way to get your reports for free; the site was created in response to federal legislation requiring that the three national credit reporting companies inform consumers about their status. Companies like actually charge you for expenses related to obtaining your credit report.

2. Make Sure You’re Aware of Any Existing Accounts

Typically, your credit report will show any accounts you have open. It’s easy to forget about credit accounts that you don’t actually use, like credit cards you stopped using but chose not to close the account ‘just in case.’

These credit accounts can easily represent the most likely upcoming dings to your credit: card companies and other lenders have started closing inactive accounts in order to limit their liability. As the amount of credit a person has goes down, so does their credit score. Be aware of this so that if your accounts do close, you won’t be taken by surprise.

3. Set Up Automatic Payments

One of the easiest credit score factors you can control is how good you are about making payments on your current balances. Even if you don’t usually carry a balance, making a payment or two late can cause a preventable dip in your credit score. Automatic payments can be a simple way of avoiding even one late payment.

4. Get Serious About Your Balances

One of the factors in a good credit score is how much credit you have available. That means that reducing your current balances has a direct connection to helping your credit score. Even adding a few dollars to your minimum monthly payment is enough to at least get you started on an upwards trend. Moving around debt, say to a zero-interest credit card, doesn’t actually help with your overall credit score.

5. Keep Your Number of Cards Constant

While your available credit is a key factor in your credit score, opening a bunch of new credit cards just to increase the amount of credit you have available won’t really help. Instead, the system used to determine credit scores reads such a move as a need for more credit: if you open several cards in a short time span, credit reporting agencies assume that you plan to use that credit and might even be planning to get yourself into some trouble with it.

Since closing unused credit cards can also have a negative impact on your credit, keeping your number of cards constant is usually the best compromise between getting the best credit card options and maintaining your good credit score.

Having a strong FICO score (over 680) will make it easier to qualify for a loan when you need it to purchase a home or a car.  You also will receive lower interest rates.