Time is Running Out for Home Buyer Tax Credit - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Time is Running Out for Home Buyer Tax Credit

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GRAYSON CO., TX---Time is running out for a stimulus incentive that some call  the "Cash for Clunkers" for homes. It basically allows first time home buyers money from the government. Michelle Gillespie reports.
     The deadline isn't until November 30th but that's the deadline when a new homebuyer would have to close on the home.
     But as most know, closing on a home and getting a mortgage is a lengthy process that could take anywhere from 30 to 45 days. 
     And as always it's better to be safe than sorry.
    "It's been great for our market, we see a lot of home purchases going on right now where people really are, they're buying houses because it's free money for them," says Michelle Castle, a mortgage lender at WR Starkey Mortgage. That's free money to the tune of $8,000---a little extra cash in a strapped economy. 

     "We've had record loan closings in our office for the last 90 to 120 days and a lot of purchasers that we see are first time home buyers taking advantages of this tax credit," says Castle

Castle says with this government-financed incentive and interest rates as low as 5 and 6 percent--now is the time to buy.

"I would say if there is a deadline, I would say have a contract no later than october 15th," says Castle.

No later than October 15th because as many know, closing on a big ticket item like a home can take weeks. But there is some good news for first time home buyers in Grayson County: selection is plentiful.

"In Sherman, we're lucky we have a lot of homes in 50-, 60-, 70-, $80,000 range and in Dallas that's non-existent," says Realtor Dean Gilbert. 

    First time home buyers are usually looking to pay less--young adults in their 20s and 30s but the tax credit isn't only for them. It includes anyone who hasn't owned a home in the past three years and those who have an income of $150,000 or lower are eligible to get an $8,000 tax credit. 
    A stimulus plan that has proved very successful this year and some say it could be the upswing to pull us out of this economic slump.

     "Generally in a recession, housing is the first thing to go, and the last thing to come back because it's a big ticket consumer item," says Gilbert.
     Right now, both the House and Senate are looking at a bill that could extend and expand this tax credit to include all home buyers as well as raise the tax credit to $15,000 and extend the deadline. 

     Michelle Gillespie, KTEN News.