The real estate market is just beginning to show some signs of revival. Many believe that the first time home buyer's credit is responsible. Congress has extended the credit for sales contracts signed by April 30, 2010 and which close by June 30, 2010. The talk is that there will be no further extensions. For homes purchases after November 6, 2009, married couples can claim the full $8,000 tax credit, assuming a home cost of $80,000 or more if the adjusted gross income is $225,000 or less. A credit phase-out begins after that amount and ends at $245,000. The phase-out for single taxpayers starts at $125,000 and ends at $145,000. Additionally, buyers can claim a $6,500 tax credit if they go out and purchase another home even if they've owned one for five consecutive years out of the last eight. This purchase must occur after November 6, 2009 and before May 1, 2010. The home purchased must be the buyer's principal residence. Note that homes costing over $800,000 don't qualify for either tax credit. To plug a hole in tax administration, a signed copy of the settlement statement must be attached to the taxpayers tax return where a credit is claimed. - Bergen Bar Tax Bulletin - Volume 26, No. 1, January 2010
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