Spring Thoughts For Real Estate

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Welcome to March!-Stefan

March 2013

How your home can help with your taxes?


It’s starting to thaw outside, which not only means it’s time to brace yourself for spring cleaning, but also that it’s never too early to start preparing your taxes. And whether you’re a new homeowner or mid-way through your 30-year mortgage, you could probably use a refresher on how your home affects what you can deduct and what kind of credits you qualify for. Make sure to keep this cheat sheet nearby so you won’t be scrambling on April 15th!             

What can you deduct?

A home mortgage interest deduction allows you to deduct your interest rate from your taxable income. In order to take the deduction, you must itemize your deductions, and your total must exceed the current standard deduction set forth in the tax code. This particular deduction can only be used on interest paid on your primary residence or a second home.
You can deduct state and local property taxes as long as they’re based on the assessed value of the real property. However, if you have money held in escrow for property taxes, you can’t claim this deduction until the money is taken out and paid. Also, if you receive a partial refund of your property tax, your deduction amount will be reduced.
If you have private mortgage insurance, you may be able to deduct the premiums paid if your adjusted gross income has not yet reached $100,000 (or $50,000 for married filing separately).
Sold a home in the past year? You might be able to deduct your selling costs from your income tax. Selling costs can include title insurance, broker’s fees, advertising expenses, and repairs, as long as they were made to improve the home’s marketability.


What kinds of credits are available?

Made any energy-efficient changes to your home this year? Depending on the changes, there are a couple credits you could qualify for. If you installed new energy-efficient insulation, windows or furnaces, the Nonbusiness Energy Property Credit allows you to get a credit worth 10% of the cost of qualified improvements made, up to $500 over your lifetime. If you’ve invested in certain qualifying solar electric systems, solar water heaters, geothermal heat pumps, wind turbines, or fuel cell property, the Residential Energy Efficient Property Credit could give you back 30 percent of what you spent. No matter which route you choose, the IRS recommends you always check the manufacturer’s tax credit certification before you purchase.

Because the conditions for these deductions and credits can be very specific, it’s best to check with a tax professional to determine your eligibility and what strategies are best for you.

Spring selling tips


Kitchens are the heart

Remember that your kitchen is your home’s biggest asset and you should present it as such. As the saying goes, “kitchens and baths sell houses.”

Model your home

Take the best and clearest photos for your home. Homes with more and better pictures hook more buyers and get them more interested.

Set the stage

Arrange your furniture to maximize the available space in all of your rooms. For a quick shot of color, put out a bowl of fruit or fresh flowers to make your home more inviting to those who see it.

About the Author
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I embrace the challenges of putting deals together in this ever-changing and fast moving business and I am open for business! I work in residential and commercial in both purchase and lease for both end users and investors.

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