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Ten Tax Tips for Individuals Selling Their Home

by Leslie Edwards

IRS Summertime Tax Tip 2011-15, August 8, 2011

The Internal Revenue Service has some important information to share with individuals who have sold or are about to sell their home. If you have a gain from the sale of your main home, you may qualify to exclude all or part of that gain from your income. Here are ten tips from the IRS to keep in mind when selling your home.

  1. In general, you are eligible to exclude the gain from income if you have owned and used your home as your main home for two years out of the five years prior to the date of its sale.
  2. If you have a gain from the sale of your main home, you may be able to exclude up to $250,000 of the gain from your income ($500,000 on a joint return in most cases).
  3. You are not eligible for the exclusion if you excluded the gain from the sale of another home during the two-year period prior to the sale of your home.

  4. If you can exclude all of the gain, you do not need to report the sale on your tax return.

  5. If you have a gain that cannot be excluded, it is taxable. You must report it on Form 1040, Schedule D, Capital Gains and Losses.

  6. You cannot deduct a loss from the sale of your main home.

  7. Worksheets are included in Publication 523, Selling Your Home, to help you figure the adjusted basis of the home you sold, the gain (or loss) on the sale, and the gain that you can exclude.

  8. If you have more than one home, you can exclude a gain only from the sale of your main home. You must pay tax on the gain from selling any other home. If you have two homes and live in both of them, your main home is ordinarily the one you live in most of the time.

  9. If you received the first-time homebuyer credit and within 36 months of the date of purchase, the property is no longer used as your principal residence, you are required to repay the credit. Repayment of the full credit is due with the income tax return for the year the home ceased to be your principal residence, using Form 5405, First-Time Homebuyer Credit and Repayment of the Credit. The full amount of the credit is reflected as additional tax on that year’s tax return.

  10. When you move, be sure to update your address with the IRS and the U.S. Postal Service to ensure you receive refunds or correspondence from the IRS. Use Form 8822, Change of Address, to notify the IRS of your address change.
For more information about selling your home, see IRS Publication 523, Selling Your Home. This publication is available at www.irs.gov or by calling 800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676).
To buy or sell real estate, call me. Leslie Edwards 770.460.9448 leslie@leslieedwards.com www.SouthMetroAtlantaMLS.com RE/MAX

Selling Your Home in a Down Market

by Leslie Edwards

Even in a down market, the best homes sell.  Read this USA Today Article for ways make sure your home gets SOLD.

http://www.usatoday.com/money/economy/housing/2011-07-02-home-sellers-down-market_n.htm

If you are ready to sell, or just want to talk about it, call me.

leslie edwards                                                                             770.460.9448                                                            leslie@leslieedwards.com                                                 www.SouthMetroAtlantaMLS.com                                                           RE/MAX Around Atlanta

 

The 7 Worst Things You Can Do to Your Credit Score

by Leslie Edwards

This Article Was Written by Broderick Perkins and Reposted
Because it is Great Information About Your Credit Score.

John Ulzheimer, president of Consumer Education at SmartCredit.com, the credit blogger for Mint.com, is an expert on credit reporting, credit scoring and identity theft.

Formerly with FICO, Equifax and Credit.com, Ulzheimer is a rare editorial source -- a recognized credit expert who actually comes from the credit industry.

He often references in his writings the "Seven FICO Deadlies," credit score deflating actions, but only recently identified them in one consolidated list.

Your credit score, from about 350 (poor) to 800 (excellent) is a numerical rendition of your credit report. The higher your score, the more likely you'll get approved for credit and the more likely you'll get the best rate and terms. Negative actions posted to your credit report, take a bite out of your credit score.

Here's what Ulzheimer says are the seven worst things you can do to your credit score. And speaking of "seven," that's how many years these black marks can stay on your credit report.

 

  • Deadbeat behavior. Frequent, significant and late payments 30 days, 60 days, 90 days late. Don't believe a 30-day-late payment won't hurt. It may not ruin your credit but it's not helpful and can remain on your report for years.

    Collection activity. When the lender gets tired of your deadbeat behavior it will call out the dogs -- a third-party collection agency. The collection agency will report collection activity to the credit bureaus and again, seven years of bad luck.

  •  Charge offs. If the lender gives up on your collection case, acknowledging you'll never pay the bill, it charges off the debt and puts your credit report on notice for seven years.

  • Public recordings. Bankruptcy, tax liens, judgments and the like are killers for your credit rating. Judgments are good (or, from your viewpoint, bad) for seven years, even if you pay them off. Bankruptcies can dog your credit report for 10 years and unpaid tax liens never go away.

  • Settlements. If you pay a portion of a debt to your lender in a settlement, say a some of the mortgage in a short sale, you can get a settlement notice on your credit report card for seven years. Credit cards and other debts, likewise can be settled, with negative impact to your credit report.

  • Foreclosures. If you can't or won't pay your mortgage the lender will eventually foreclose and relieve you of your home. Another seven year negative notification will drag down your score. The same applies when you give the home to the lender in a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure.

  • Repossession – When you don't pay your vehicle loans a bounty hunter will be coming your way. He or she is not coming after you, but your vehicle, and that's often without notice, after you've been dunned for a while. It's all legal. The repo man can take your property down and your credit score will follow.

    Although getting a mortgage is more difficult today than it was a few years ago when the real estate market was hot, qualified buyers are getting approved everyday. Call me and let's discuss your situation and see how I can help you.  Your information is always confidential and as always, there is no obligation to do business with me.  Let's talk.

    leslie edwards                                                                       Environmentally Aware, Socially Conscious, Politically Active Real Estate Agent 770.460.9448                                                                                           

    CDPE Certified Distressed Property Expert                                                                              CRS   Certified Residential Specialist                                                                                          Epro  Certified Internet Professional                                                                                              ABR   Accredited Buyer Representative                                                                                       GRI   Graduate of the Realtor Institute                                                                                            Dave Ramsey Endorsed Local Provider                                                                                   Selling South Metro Atlanta including:Clayton, Fayette, Henry, Coweta, Merewether, South Fulton & Spalding Counties. Call me now tow buy or sell in all the towns and cities south of the Atlanta International Airport, including, but not limited to:Brooks, College Park, Fairburn, Fayetteville, Jonesboro, Locust Grove, McDonough, Newnan, Sharpsburg, Stockbridge, Palmetto, Peachtree City, Tyrone and more

    Moving Families Since 1978                                                                                                                 Let My Experience Work For You                                                                                     770.460.0739 Fax                                                                                                                                    See All the Lisings in The MLS At www.SouthMetroAtlantaMLS.com      www.leslieedwards.com/blog                                                                     leslie@leslieedwards.com                                                                                                           RE/MAX Around Atlanta

     

    Save your credit, relieve the uncertainty, and most of all, help your family. Call me for Short Sale and Pre-Foreclosure Solutions and let's get started on the path to recovery.

    http://www.leslieedwards.com/Blog/What-is-a-Short-Sale-and-Why-You-Might-Want-One

      

     

     

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    List Your Home For Sale In Winter

    by Leslie Edwards

    Sellers will often take their homes off the market if they have not sold by Fall or they will wait to list until Spring because a common belief is that homes do not sell in the Winter months.

    Although there are fewer buyers looking during the 2nd Season (Fall to Spring) than during what is considered the hot Selling Season, a lot of the people looking when the weather is nice and school is out, never buy anything. 

    I have found that if people are looking at  homes during the 2nd Season (Winter) are serious buyers who intend to buy. Fewer showings but the buyers are ready, willing and able to buy. Since showings tend to follow the light of day, the showing hours are compressed and evening appointments are very rare. Fewer, more convenient and better quality showings are less intrusive for the family.

    Since most Retail Sellers (not distressed, short sale or foreclosure) believe nothing sells in Winter, there is less competition for the buyers who are looking.

    According the National Association of Realtors 1 in 4 home sales across the US involved a distressed property.  In some areas of South Metro Atlanta the number is much higher making short sales and foreclosures the biggest competition for Retail Sellers.

    Recently, some of the largest mortgage companies, including Chase, announced that they were halting foreclosures until they work out some paperwork and process issues that could void some foreclosures.  Many mortgage servicers typically slow down on foreclosing during the holidays.

    If there are fewer foreclosures on the market, there is less competition for the Retail Sellers.

    Less competition, less intrusion, better quality prospects.... Three good reasons to market your home now. 

    I am expecting a lot of 4th Quarter real estate activity so call me and let's get started.  I offer FREE Buyer and Seller Consultations with no obligation because I want to be your real estate resource.

    If you or anyone you know is behind on their mortgage, call me.  I help people avoid foreclosure.

    leslie edwards                                                                       770.460.9448

    CDPE Certified Distressed Property Expert                                              CRS   Certified Residential Specialist                                                      Epro  Certified Internet Professional                                                      ABR   Accredited Buyer Representative                                                       Dave Ramsey Endorsed Local Provider

    Fax  770.460.0739

    Selling South Metro Atlanta including: Clayton, Fayette, Henry, Coweta, Meriwether, Pike, South Fulton & Spalding Counties                                      All the towns and cities south of the Atlanta International Airport,

    Including:  Brooks, College Park, Fairburn, Fayetteville, Hampton, Jonesboro, Locust Grove, McDonough, Newnan, Sharpsburg, Stockbridge, Peachtree City, Tyrone and many more

    Moving Families Since 1978

    Let My Experience Work For You

    leslie@leslieedwards.com

    RE/MAX Around Atlanta

     See all of the properties for sale in the MLS at www.SouthMetroAtlantaMLS.com

     

     

    Clayton Co. 3rd Quarter 2008

    by Leslie Edwards

    Clayton County real estate activity 7.1.2008 through 9.3.2008

    3022 properties currently for sale throughout Clayton Co.

    40% of those properties are listed for under $100,000

    344 properties are under contract and may or may not close

    70% of the under contract properties were listed under $100,000

    843 properties sold within the 3rd Quarter

    67% were sold for under $100,000

    1066 properties expired unsold

    44% sold

    56% expired

    The market in Clayton County is flooded with properties for sale, which is great for buyers because oversupply means lower prices.   Investors and home buyers can certainly benefit from low prices, lots of selection and low interest rate mortgages.

      Regardless of what you are hearing about the availability of home loans, there is always money for credit worthy buyers. 

      It is the buyers with slow credit and no money in the bank and no down payment that are having trouble getting financing.  The lending culture for years has been to find a way to squeeze every buyer into some kind of mortgage, even if they really cannot afford to buy. 

     The low starting interest rates for interest only loans and a variety of adjustable rate mortgage products gave buyers a starting payment they could afford.  Selling points of those mortgages were the assumptions that buyers would get a raise and make more money and the value of the home would increase. 

      The reality is that home prices continue to fall while the cost of living continues to increase, jobs are not secure, companies are failing and the expected raises aren't happening. 

      When the interest rates adjust, the payments keep going up until the homeowners can't make the new payments.  These homeowners can't sell because prices are falling instead of increasing and they owe more than the market value of the home. When they qualified for the loan, neither the lenders or the buyers factored in unexpected expenses, ie: a new transmission for the car, illness, job loss, babies, divorce etc.  When a couple qualifies for the maximum loan and one of them stops contributing financially, neither can afford the payments.  

      When homeowners can't make their payments it is too easy to walk away, especially if they did not make a down payment.  Letting the homes go into foreclosure continues to drive prices even lower.  This downward trend also shows homeowners that allowing a foreclosure no longer carries the stigman it did in the past.  The mentality seems to be that everybody else is doing it so why not?

     This market climate creates excellent opportunities for buyers to purchase a home for far less that the value of a few years ago and get more house for the money. 

     This is a great time to buy so if you can, take advantage.  My thirty years of real estate experience, through many up and down cycles, has convinced me that no matter how low the market goes, it always comes back, often with a vengance The variable is time.  

      No one really knows how long this downturn will last but it is clear that a down market creates opportunities for investors and home buyers. Some buyers are waiting for the bottom of the marke to get the best price.  We know the market is at the bottom when it starts going back up.  Don't miss out on great buys.

      Call me at 770.460.9448 for the help finding the very best properties for the very best prices.

       Sellers. It is not the best time to sell so, if possible, wait.  If you really want to move, considering renting the house until the market turns.  If neither waiting or renting are options for you, call me at 770.460.9448 for a FREE market consultation.  Let my 30 years experience work for you.

    leslie edwards            

    sells real estate  

    770.460.9448

    RE/MAX Around Atlanta

    Think Green to save money and the planet

    Displaying blog entries 1-5 of 5

    If you hear of anyone who wants to buy or sell in any of these areas, please mention me and then call me so I can contact them. I appreciate your referrals!