2011 Tax Tips for Santa Cruz Home Owners

Posted by Lauren Spencer on Monday, March 14th, 2011 at 11:01pm.

It’s the time of year we all dread… time for your 2010 tax filings.  While I am not a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or even a plain old accountant, I do want to share with you some basic tax tips all Santa Cruz home owners should consider before filing their taxes.

• Contact a tax expert.  My motto is always, if in doubt, contact a tax expert.  There’s no way around it; taxes are complicated.  While some don’t want to spend their money on tax experts, I’ve found that they’ve saved me much more money than they’ve cost.  And, the peace of mind they provide is priceless.

• Claim your Santa Cruz home owner’s tax deduction, if you’re eligible.  In 2002, a study was conducted that showed that 61% of eligible home owners did not claim their home owner’s tax deductions on their income taxes.  That means that 61% of home owners who would have saved on their income taxes took the standard deduction and paid a higher tax bill that they needed to.  Don’t miss any more tax savings by automatically taking the standard deduction.  Consult a tax expert to find out how much you can save by taking advantage of your home owner’s tax breaks.

• Review your past returns.  If you think you might have overpaid your taxes in the past, have a tax expert review your past returns and help you file an amended return to reclaim your money. 

• Start paying back your 2008 first-time home buyer tax break. If you claimed the very first version of the first-time home buyers tax break on your 2008 tax returns, you must now start paying it back.  The credit has to be repaid in 15 equal payments each tax-filing time, beginning with 2010 returns.  The 2008 tax break wasn’t a true credit.  Instead, it was an interest-free loan, and like all loans, it must be paid back.

• Claim subsequent home-buyer tax credits.  If you qualified for and used the 2009 (which was extended to June, 2010) first-time home-buyer tax credit or home-owner tax credit, you had the option to claim the credit on your 2009 or 2010 taxes.  If you waited to claim them, now’s the time to do so.

Even though the home-buyer tax credits are no longer available, this is an amazing time to buy a Santa Cruz home.

If you’d like to learn more about why now is a fabulous time to buy a home, or if you need help finding a home you love, I can help.  Give me a call today at 831.662.6522 or email me at Lauren@LaurenSpencer.com.

For additional information visit my website at www.MySantaCruzRealEstate.com.


Certified Public Accountant

2008 first-time home buyer tax break

Subsequent home buyer tax credits

About Lauren Spencer

Award-Winning Santa Cruz REALTOR®

Lauren Spencer is your local real estate expert, specializing in Santa Cruz real estate and surrounding communities—this is where she lives, works, and plays too. Let her know your questions about the community and county and she'll be happy to fill you in on all you want to know! Lauren Spencer has consistently been voted best local REALTOR in Santa Cruz and is always happy to offer her advice and expertise. Call her at: 800.226.4717.

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