GAO Breaks Down States’ Use Of Home-Buyer Tax Credits


Californians led the nation in terms of total dollar amount claimed under the various federal home-buyer tax credits, a new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) shows. The report breaks down states' use of the home buyer tax credits in terms of total dollar amount claimed, dollar amount claimed per resident and dollar amount claimed per tax-credit claim.

Congress enacted three different versions of the tax credit. Provisions were included in the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA), the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) and the Worker, Homeownership, and Business Assistance Act of 2009 (Assistance Act).

Although California ranked first in dollars claimed under the provisions, the state ranked 32nd and 29th in the amount claimed per resident under the HERA provision and under the combined provisions of ARRA and the Assistance Act, respectively.

Nevada ranked first in the amount claimed per resident, and Utah ranked first in the average dollar amount of credits claimed per claim.

Through July 3, the Internal Revenue Service reported about 1 million claimants claimed $7.3 billion in interest-free loans through the HERA provision, about 1.7 million claimed about $12.1 billion under the ARRA provision (representing about half of the total home-buyer tax-credit claims) and nearly 600,000 claimed about 4.1 billion under the Assistance Act. The Assistance Act figures included about 400,000 first-time buyers (for about $2.9 billion in claims) and nearly 200,000 repeat buyers (for about $1.2 billion).

Joint Committee on Taxation estimates suggest that the three home-buyer credit provisions combined may result in total revenue losses to the federal government of about $22 billion through 2019.

SOURCE: Government Accountability Office

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