REAL ESTATE REALITY
ATTENTION: First-Time Home Buyers!
Clearwater, FL (March 2009) - The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 authorizes a tax credit of up to $8,000 for qualified first-time homebuyers that purchase a home between January 1, 2009 and December 1, 2009 and that they will occupy as their main or primary residence.
Even though this tax credit only counts for a primary residence, it may be a single family home such as a townhome, condominium, villa, manufactured home and even houseboats.
A first-time home buyer is defined as anyone that has not owned a home for three years prior to the current purchase of a home. This means that if a married couple would like to qualify for this program, that neither of them could have owned a home for three years.
Depending also on your income, the tax credit is equal to 10% of the purchase price up to a maximum of $8,000. There are income limitations that apply and can lower or eliminate the tax credit, depending on how much money the buyer makes.
It is very easy to claim the tax credit; you simply claim it on your federal income tax return!
Clearwater, FL (Feb. 4, 2009) - This is an interesting question that I’ve been asked several times recently, so I finally called the Property Appraiser’s Office to find out for myself.
Now, before I tell you the answer, I want to clarify a few terms.
Appraised Value – This is done by an Appraiser hired to determine the value of a home when it has been sold, when it is being re-financed, or to determine the market value of a home.
Just Market Value – This is the term the Property Appraiser’s Office uses for the fair market value of a property. (This is usually broken up into two parts—the Just Market Land which is how much your land is currently worth, and Just Market Improved which is how much your home or building, is worth currently without the land value. Then there is Total Assessment, and it’s the two values added together.
FINALLY, SOME GOOD REAL ESTATE NEWS!
From my personal experience, I’ve been noticing that my listings are being shown more, and that prices seem to be stabilizing. Buyers are poking
out their heads again, that they are finding that the water is fine!
Even the National Association of Realtors is reporting that existing home sales in Florida increased in October, actually by 15% over last September. Condo sales are also up, but not so drastic, with a 5% increase over last year.
Last October’s median home price was $222,200 and this October’s median home price was $169,700. That is a 24 percent decrease in one year.
Prices had flown out of reach very quickly, and this adjustment, although painful to homeowners that now owe more on their home that it is worth, is really good news to people looking to buy.
Ding-Ding-Ding! Choo-Choo! All Aboard!
Come one, come all to the magical holiday festivities once again created by the Clearwater Community Volunteers, dubbed “Elves” by Santa himself.
If you’re already a faithful fan of “Winter Wonderland” I assure you, that this year has more surprises than ever!
However, while the Elves were busily working on “Winter Wonderland”, Pam Ryan Anderson (the Head Elf) received an urgent text from Santa. The text said, “Ho, Ho, Ho, there are still a few in the community that are not aware that the festivities are open to everyone and, admission is FREE!” and his text continued, “Ho, Ho, Ho, some ‘naughty overgrown children’ otherwise known as ‘adults’ may have never even noticed ‘Winter Wonderland’ when driving up and down Ft. Harrison.”