California state housing officials have announced that buyers of newly constructed homes and first-time home buyers in California can tap into a state tax credit program that will help them save up to $10,000, starting May 1, under a bill signed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Assembly Bill 183, signed by Schwarzenegger in March, extended and expanded the state's Home Buyer Tax Credit Program, making $200 million available to first-time home buyers: $100 million for the New Home Credit and $100 million for the First-Time Buyer Credit.
Under the provisions of the bill, a first-time home buyer or a buyer of a new home may receive up to a $10,000 state tax credit for purchases that close on or after May 1.
To qualify for a tax credit on a new-home purchase, the home must be a single-family residence, have never been occupied (sellers must certify that the home has never been occupied), be eligible for the California property tax homeowner's exemption and be occupied by the buyer as her or his principal residence for a minimum of two years immediately following the purchase.
"Combined with other initiatives by state, local and federal governments as well as the private sector, this home buyer tax credit will play an important role in stabilizing California's housing market," says Steven Spears, executive director of the California Housing Finance Agency.