Question: When is a credit not really a credit?
Answer: When the government gets involved.
I was not going to write on The Housing and Recovery Act of 2008 because so much has been written here at AR about it, especially about the elimination of the Down Payment Assistance and the increase in the FHA buyer contribution. But, here I am writing about it.
The regular press and tv news all seem to regurgitate the same talking points without any depth. For instance, this 'tax credit' for first-time homebuyers keeps being touted as a wonderful way to help struggling buyers in their first year of ownership. BUT - IT IS NOT A TRUE 'CREDIT'. It is a loan. Granted it is interst-free, but it is still a loan. It must be paid back over a 15-year period. It is my understanding that if it is not paid back, there will be interest and penalties attached just like if you did not pay your income taxes.
I'm a little tired of getting letters and emails from my Congressmen, patting themselves on the back for passing such wonderful legislation. The correspondance I get from them are equally as shallow as the news articles. And don't get me started on our trade association - NAR. You know, the orginization who is supposed to be looking out for our interests. I really feel like they pulled the wool over my eyes on this. I blindly followed their recommendation to support this legislation. "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me." Woe to the unlucky person who calls me next year asking for my PAC contribution.
Enough of my rant...I feel better. Now, where did I put those rose colored glasses?