There are some important deadlines that everyone needs to be aware of.
If you are planning on buying a house and you are a first time home buyer....you need to be under contract by April 30th, 2010 and you must close on the property and have the deed recorded by June 30th, 2010 if you want to receive your $8,000 first time home buyer tax credit. (Remember...if you purchase a house that is less than $80,000 then you only get a tax credit in the amount of 10% of the purchase price)
To qualify for the tax credit your adjusted gross income must be $125,000 or less if you are single...and $225,000 if you are a joint filer.
If you are a move up buyer and want to receive your $6,500 tax credit then the deadline dates remain the same. You must be under contract by April 30th, 2010 and must close by June 30th, 2010. You must have lived in your current house for 5 of the last 8 years and the next house that you purchase cannot be priced over $800,000.
Also, here is a new one I bet you haven't heard about. If you are going to be getting an FHA loan...starting April 4th, 2010 you can only receive 3% of the purchase price from the seller to use towards closing costs and pre-paids. This will be more of an issue for people buying houses that are priced at or below $150,000.
Also starting on April 4th, 2010...if you are receiving an FHA loan your upfront mortgage insurance premium will be increasing from 1.75% to 2.25%.
You can get an FHA loan if your loan amount is $303,750 or less and then you are only required to have a down payment of 3.5%.
These deadlines are coming fast and if you think you want to buy a house for the first time or if you are a move up buyer then you should really start to make a move. Interest rates are going up and I do not believe that the government will ever offer these buyer incentives again in the future.
I read a quote in a news article a few months ago that I believe stands true in this real estate market.......If you are renting and don't buy a house in this market, you are either broke or stupid! It is as simple as that.