This week the U.S. Senate approved an amendment to the Stimulus package that provides a tax credit up to $15,000 to anyone purchasing a home between January 1st, 2009 and December 31st, 2009. The tax credit is equal to 10% of the total purchase price up to a maximum of $15,000. For example, if you purchase a home for $150,000 (or more), you would be entitled to a $15,000 tax credit. Current law provides up to a $7,500 tax credit to a first-time home purchaser. The new amendment, if passed, would apply to all home buyers whether they are first-time home buyers or not. Also, the newly proposed $15,000 tax credit would only require repayment in the event the taxpayer sells the home within 24 months of purchase or does not use the home as the taxpayer’s personal residence. This proposal is not yet law, but all signs are pointing to it being part of the final legislation that reaches President Obama’s desk for signature.

Key Points:

* The tax credit is for the amount of $15,000 or 10% of the purchase price (whichever is less), with the option to utilize all in one year or spread it out over a period of two years.

*  The tax credit is available to all purchases of any home from the date of enactment for one full year - it is no longer restricted to just a first time homebuyer credit.

*  Able to claim the credit against the 2008 tax return. 

*  Buyers must occupy the home for at least two years as their principle residence.

*  Includes a two year recapture provision (if you leave the home in two years you lose the credit). 

*  Purchases of homes by investors are ineligible.

*  This legisation sunsets the previous $7,500 Housing Tax credit on the date of enactment.

*  The credit is not repayable (the $7,500 credit previously in place was at a zero percent interest rate but had to be paid back over 5 years).

Note: Some elements of this bill may have changed since this was published. To get complete real estate information for Wisconsin home buyers and the Wisconsin home buyer tax credit, please contact Jolenta directly.

Interested in getting a great deal on a home and taking advantage of the new tax credit? Try our interactive map search to search Madison WI homes, homes and condominiums in the Greater Madison Area or real estate anywhere in Dane County. First-time home buyer? Or register at to define your own searches, set up email alerts, save properties to favorites and much, much more!

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