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Saturday, August 9, 2008

Daybreak Down Payment Option: First-Time Home Buyer Tax Credit

While Utah has so far enjoyed a relatively small decline in the residential real estate market, many other states have not fared so well. With the strict standards in place for mortgage qualification and the lack of plentiful buyers home values have dropped quite rapidly. In light of this crises, the US government has made efforts to intervene and boost the economy. One of the facets of their efforts is the First-Time Home Buyer Tax Credit. For those who would like to purchase a home in Daybreak any time soon: listen up.

The First-Time Home Buyer Tax Credit is not an actual tax credit. A tax credit is when the government either reduces your tax liability or increases your tax return dollar for dollar. The name sounds like it is free money. It is not free money. However, this does not mean that you should not consider using this program. The First-Time Home Buyer Tax Credit is actually an interest-free loan. You pay the loan back via your taxes for the next fifteen years. At this point you may be asking - is it worth it? My answer is definitely yes.

If you understand the time value of money you will know that a dollar in 1993 was worth more than a dollar now in 2008. Why? Because it had more buying power. It could buy you more bread, electricity, even gas. (Actually then it could buy you about one gallon) That was 15 years ago. In short, while you will have to pay every cent back to the government in the next 15 years you will gain a lot of value with this deal.

The maximum amount that you can qualify for is 10% of the value of the home you intend to buy with a cap of $7500. So if you buy a home in Daybreak you will qualify for the full amount. You can even use the tax credit as a down payment for your new home if you work it right. You get the benefit of the tax credit after you file right? Yes, however, right now FHA financing requires a minimum down payment of 3.5%. On a $250k purchase that is $8,750. The FHA allows a buyer to borrow money from family for down payment. This means that a first time buyer could borrow the down payment from relatives, make a home purchase, then use the tax credit to pay back all or a portion of the borrowed funds.

If your still not sure, consider this: assuming an interest rate of 7%, the home owner saves up to $4,200 in interest payments over the 15-year repayment period. Compared to $7,500 financed through a 30-year mortgage with a 7% interest rate, the home buyer tax credit saves home buyers over $8,100 in interest payments. If you are still a little worried about the housing market in Utah consider this: if it goes down further and you are forced to sell, then you will not have to pay back the government for the tax credit "loan." So if you are on the edge, it would probably be a good idea to jump off before the July 1st, 2009 deadline.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Would you inform us on the plans for roads near daybreak? I have heard rumors that 118th will be widened and that 114th will extend to be an I-15 on ramp. Is this true? Any info would be appreciated.