Homebuyers could get more time for tax credit

By Tami Luhby, senior writer


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- First-time homebuyers looking to land an $8,000 federal income tax credit may have a little more time to close on their purchases if a Senate amendment unveiled Thursday makes it into law.

As it stands now, homebuyers must have signed contracts by April 30 and must close the deal by June 30. They could be eligible for an $8,000 tax credit if they are first-time buyers or a $6,500 credit if they owned and lived in their previous home for five of the last eight years.

The closing deadline, however, could be pushed back to Sept. 30 under an amendment offered by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., and Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn. The senators said they want to make sure banks have time to process the transactions -- especially short-sales, which is a more involved process.

"By extending the transaction deadline, we can ensure that everyone taking advantage of this credit can complete the purchase of their new home, Reid said.

It remains to be seen, however, whether the amendment will go anywhere. It's part of a controversial jobs and tax bill that may be radically changed before the Senate approves it. Lawmakers are not scheduled to vote on the bill until next week at the earliest. To top of page


Frontline troops push for solar energy
The U.S. Marines are testing renewable energy technologies like solar to reduce costs and casualties associated with fossil fuels. Play
25 Best Places to find rich singles
Looking for Mr. or Ms. Moneybags? Hunt down the perfect mate in these wealthy cities, which are brimming with unattached professionals. More
Fun festivals: Twins to mustard to pirates!
You'll see double in Twinsburg, Ohio, and Ketchup lovers should beware in Middleton, WI. Here's some of the best and strangest town festivals. Play
Overnight Avg Rate Latest Change Last Week
30 yr fixed3.92%3.97%
15 yr fixed3.00%3.08%
5/1 ARM3.48%3.44%
30 yr refi3.99%4.02%
15 yr refi3.10%3.16%
Rate data provided
by Bankrate.com
View rates in your area
 
Find personalized rates:
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 18,132.70 -81.72 -0.45%
Nasdaq 4,963.53 -24.36 -0.49%
S&P 500 2,104.50 -6.24 -0.30%
Treasuries 2.00 -0.01 -0.69%
Data as of 2:54am ET
Company Price Change % Change
Bank of America Corp... 15.81 -0.23 -1.43%
Apple Inc 128.46 -1.96 -1.50%
General Electric Co 25.99 0.10 0.39%
Microsoft Corp 43.85 -0.20 -0.47%
Chesapeake Energy Co... 16.68 -0.52 -3.02%
Data as of Feb 27

Sections

Bus drivers for Apple, Yahoo, Amtrak, eBay, Genentech and Zynga have unionized, following in the footsteps of drivers who shuttle Facebook employees. More

Potential presidential candidate says that improvement in unemployment rate is due to millions of jobless not being counted. More

The top 5 consumer complaints have to do with identity theft, debt collectors, imposters, telephone companies and banks. More