How do these Obama bucks work?

Apparently they are giving a $8000 free downpayment if your a first time buyer. What are the qualifications to get the whole $8000? Does the price of the house matter?

I know you have to be a first time home buyer(which i would be)

I ask this because… theres a $15,000 dollar house in my neighborhood, does this mean I could get the house for $7000?(15000-8000=7000)

Im sure it doesnt work like that, but just wanted to make sure…

Since the property you plan to purchase will cost only $15000, your tax credit will be $1500 if you are otherwise qualified. To get the full tax credit of $8000, the home needs to cost at least $80K.

Here are the basic rules:

  • The tax credit is 10% of the purchase price of the home but is capped at $8,000. The tax credit applies only to first-time home buyers and principal residences.

  • A “first-time home buyer” is someone who hasn’t owned a principal residence for three years before buying a house. (The date of purchase is considered the day that the title is transferred.) That means if you’ve owned a vacation home or an investment property --but not a principal residence – within the past three years, you could still qualify for the credit.

  • Only those who purchase a home between January 1 and November 30, 2009 are eligible for the credit. Anyone who bought a home last year won’t be able to take advantage of it.

  • The tax credit is subject to income limitations. Single buyers need a modified adjusted gross income of $75,000 or less to qualify for the full credit, that’s $150,000 for married couples. Those earning more than these thresholds may be eligible for reduced credits.

  • Buyers have to own the home for at least three years in order to capitalize on the credit. If they sell the home before then, they will have to return the credit to the government. (Exceptions may be made in certain cases, such as death or divorce.)

  • Married couples filing a joint tax return must both be first time homebuyers to qualify for the full credit. Unrelated co-owners share the credit equally.

My mortgage broker told me that I would not get the money right away and use it as my down payment. Instead, I would get the money a few months after the purchase. I know a guy that just bought a house and said he will get the 8k in a few months. Is this correct? Please clarify.

Thank you!

You get the money when you file your tax return. You can wait until next year and get the money when you file your 2009 tax return, or file an amended 2008 return to claim the tax credit.

Some lenders are letting you borrow the money in a second mortgage loan so you can use the tax credit as your downpayment. When you get your tax refund, you pay off the second mortgage.

Thanks for the help dave!