Home Front

A blog about the economy and the Sacramento-area real estate market.

June 25, 2010
California's first-time homebuyer tax credits: going, going....

It's going fast. California's Franchise Tax Board reports that it's received nearly 18,000 applications requesting $91 million of an available $100 million set aside for first-time home buyer tax credits up to $10,000.

The FTB points out that the numbers so far are only estimates based on small samples. So it plans to take 28,000 applications before shutting off the fax machine. Also, many of those applications coming in are duplicates, and most people won't be able to claim the full $10,000.

But the numbers show again the popularity of a stimulus passed almost unanimously by state lawmakers in March. The bill, AB 183, was designed to soak up excess housing inventory and help revive the state's construction industry. Many have argued that it's a giveaway to people who would have bought anyway, and that there are more pressing needs in a state facing $20 billion in budget gaps. But consumers sure appear to like this.

FTB expects to have numbers next month on a similar $100 million allocation for tax credits to buyers of new, unoccupied houses.

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