The Real Deal Miami

Tax credit window to close, speeding sales

September 14, 2009 11:59AM

Palm Beach County real estate agents are echoing the rest of the country in telling prospective buyers they should act now or miss the $8,000 federal tax credit for first-time homebuyers. Jody Samanich calls it free money when he pitches clients, and he said many hesitant purchasers are getting off the fence. The National Association of Realtors reports sales of homes were up 7.2 percent in July and have risen each of the last four months, the first such streak nationally since June 2004. While there are intense lobbying efforts to extend the subsidy for another 18 months, Pat Newport, an economist at IHS Global Insight, said that while the tax credit is likely causing a rise in sales, it’s affecting rentals and other aspects of the real estate market.