Real estate poll results: First-time buyer tax credit
Yikes! Time's a-wasting. The deadline's Nov. 30, and real estate agents have warned that it can easily take more time than you have left to get from contract to closing if you're using an FHA-insured loan.
But that all goes out the window if the credit gets extended, which it might. (There's even talk about upping the amount or expanding it to all buyers.)
Here's what the rest of you poll-takers said:
Bought this year; have gotten or will get the credit. Booyah! (Twenty percent)
Trying to buy in time to get the credit; have a contract but haven't closed yet. (Nineteen percent)
Purposely waiting until the credit expires before buying. (Thirteen percent)
Six percent of you aren't a buyer or seller, 5 percent say you bought this year but don't qualify for the credit, 4 percent are trying to sell and hoping the credit will help, another 4 percent are interested in buying but don't care about the credit, and 1 percent have sold or are selling to a first-time buyer.
Several others wrote in answers. For instance:
"Bought last year with the $7500 credit that has to be repaid. Wish I'd waited!" (The $8,000 credit doesn't have to be repaid unless you move out within three years.)
"Previously bought and would buy and sell if it wasn't first time buyers only!!!!"
"Want to buy with the credit but what's out there for sale is garbage!"
"Bid on shortsale 5 months ago..waiting on bank. Need to close Nov 30!"
Here are your opinions about what should happen to the credit:
Most popular answer: Extend it as is for six months to a year. Forty-six percent of you opted for that choice.
Twenty-three percent of you want to extend it, but increase the amount and/or the eligible buyers.
Twenty-two percent say the credit should expire after Nov. 30 as planned.
Five percent say extend it, but decrease the amount and/or the eligible buyers.
Four percent say the credit should become permanent.
Some of you commented on the twin-polls post to share where you're coming from. For instance, Sarah, who's waiting to close on a house, said the credit isn't a big motivator: "It's a nice bonus to be sure, but in the grand scheme of things isn't really that much money. Not worth trying to score a house within the time frame that you don't like or can't really afford or anything like that, at least from where we stand."
Jason, who just had a contract fall through, said: "Of greater concern to me than the tax credit is the possibility of FHA raising its minimum down-payment."
Chel is trying to get a home, but the credit is making that harder: "Because of the credit, everything we've been interested has been scooped up too fast -- and we're not going to play the bidding war game."
And real estate agent John K. thinks any consideration of the upsides and downsides of the credit ought to include its ripple impact: "After spending $150-200k on a home, and pumping 1-2% of that sale price into the economy via transfer/recordation taxes, you then are going to start to make it 'your own.' Most houses in that price range need some sort of work usually, and even if it's move-in ready, you still want to add your own touches in terms of painting, furniture, etc."