Saturday, September 19, 2009

Homebuyer Tax-Credit Extension Gains Lawmaker Support

Senators are working to make sure that lawmakers are aware of the November 30th deadline for the first time homebuyers tax credit. Sen. John Isakson, a Republican from Georgia, along with a few other Senators, are pushing to extend the $8,000 credit, which they claim drastically increase homes sales over the past year.

“I’m working the floor now to make everyone aware that the $8,000 credit sunsets on Nov. 30,” Isakson said in an interview today. The former real estate executive says he is “talking to everybody and anybody.”

Realtors, bankers and homebuilders have joined in the push, starting a campaign that encourages Congress to extend the program for one year with the tag line: “Don’t Let America’s Real Estate Recovery Expire.” Executives including Fannie Mae’s Michael Williams and Hyperion Partners LP’s Lewis Ranieri have attributed improvements in home sales and prices to the credit, and Isakson said he is worried the market may suffer without it.

“If you take that kind of business out of what’s already a very weak housing market, you do nothing but protract and extend the recession,” Isakson said. December “marks the beginning of the historical worst time for home sales,” he said.

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs told reporters today that President Barack Obama’s economic team is looking at the tax credit and “evaluating the impact” on new home sales.

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