October 19, 2009
Thank you for contacting me with your thoughts regarding housing issues. I appreciate hearing your views.
As you may be aware, the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008, signed into law in 2008, provided a temporary tax credit for first-time homebuyers. This credit was intended to help homeowners and boost the market in the face of falling home prices and an excess supply of homes. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA; P.L. 111-5) extended the credit and increased its value to a maximum of 10% of a home’s price, or $8,000, for home purchases made in 2009. With Americans working hard to make ends meet, this has been a helpful tool for many in achieving their desired home purchases.
The tax credit is set to expire on December 1, 2009. The summer months saw existing home sales rise, a very promising trend for the future of the housing market, and many analysts believe the credit has contributed to this growth. Helping homeowners is a necessary goal in our effort to aid both struggling families and the economy as a whole. Homeownership has long been the centerpiece of the vision that is the "American Dream."
There have been discussions in Congress about extending the $8,000 tax credit or even expanding it. The discussions have been bipartisan but have not yielded any concrete legislative results. To that end, Senator Johnny Isakson has introduced the Home Buyer Tax Credit Act of 2009 (S.1230), which would replace the current tax credit for first-time homebuyers with a one-time credit for 10% of the purchase price, up to $15,000. This bill has been referred to the Senate Committee on Finance for review. While I am not a member of this committee, I will continue to monitor this legislation and the status of the homebuyer tax credit. It is important that we not backtrack on recent progress to stabilize the market.
I will continue to listen closely to what you and other Coloradans have to say about matters before Congress, the concerns of our communities, and the issues facing Colorado and the nation. My job is not about merely supporting or opposing legislation; it is also about bridging the divide that has paralyzed our nation’s politics. For more information about my positions and to learn how my office can assist you, please visit my website at www.markudall.senate.gov.
United States Senator, Colorado