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Wayne F. Smi…, Real Estate Pro in Hillsborough, NJ

What negative impact will the recent budget plan, limiting mortgage interest deductability have?

Asked by Wayne F. Smith, Hillsborough, NJ Sat Feb 28, 2009

The recently announced Federal Budget plan decreases the amount of mortgage interest deductability for families making over $259K. How severe will this impact be in the $800K market. Sounds devestating to me. What about you?

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Wayne: While it's much too soon to tell what impact any of the stimulus/budget actions will have, I imagine that sooner or later we will have fewer houses selling in the upper ranges as a percentage of homes sold. One has only to go back to 1980 when the really posh new homes were selling for $100,00 to $125,000. You can go through development after development of what we called IBMer's, (4 bedroom 2 1/2 bath colonials, that were sold to those high flyers of the era, the IBM executive/salesperson.) Only the very senior management and top docs got to build bigger and usually on a single lot with a small custom builder. Will the absence of cathedral ceiling "family" rooms and crossover bridges from master suite to family bedroom corridor really mean the end of civilization as we know it? Perhaps we'll just have to sell more town homes and semi- detached places, even if new construction.

If there is going to be downward pressure because of scaled back incomes, perhaps, as businessmen, we should encourage sellers in the upper ranges to cash in while the bottom is still not in sight, if only we can find one speculator willing to buy left in the country.

Anyway, what we were doing has gotten us to where we are now. As Einstein was reputed to have said, repeating the same action and expecting different results is idiocy. (or words to that effect.)

Here’s another thought about how family incomes might actually rise, from the fellow who went to Darfur with George Clooney and Ann Curry.…
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Mar 1, 2009

Thank you for the link. I found it informative.

I really want to try and get a perspective on how this portion of the budget will affect those sellers that I'm working with that are at the higher end of the scale. They are not too high ($3M+) where the very wealthy may still have excess discretionary funds....I'm speaking of the $800K - $1.5M range. NJ has a high tax rate; for example the taxes on one of the listings is about $28K per year. Add that to the mortgage P&I, ($250K+ family income sure seems to be the target buyer market) and not having the full deductability on the "I":....
Well, I know it's not a good thing for this portion of the marketplace. But how are other agents consulting their selling clients?


Wayne Smith
Weidel Realtors
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Mar 1, 2009
Hi Conservitive guys:

Here's a different opinion for you to contemplate.

Best of luck! (We all may need it.)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Mar 1, 2009

The answer is Devestating! I guess you are not listening to Rush's speech to CPAC which is laying it out at this very moment.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 28, 2009
Jeanne & Ed,

I too received that letter which prompted the question to those of us who are the "sergeants in the army" so to speak. I really wanted to put an $800+ versus simply $800 since I have tended to get listings towards the upper side. With the high cost of living and average home value in NJ, not only will those above the $250K mark have their taxes do up in 2011 but the adjusted gross will also go up with this budget program. The buying power will go down as will the upper end of the market. I'm trying to quantify the impact hence the request for thoughts.


Well looks like all 3 conservations in NJ (I include myself in your company) all value the Trulia site ;-)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 28, 2009
Hi Ed, just knowing that you have staunch, conservative view has cheered me up - me too, heaven help us all!

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0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 28, 2009

So as not to play politics, which I would love to do, but my wife implores me to, because of my staunch, conservative viewpoints, I am going to share a letter I received yesterday from the honorable, 2009 President of the National Association of Realtors, Charles McMillan, which follows:

Dear Fellow REALTOR®,
You may have seen news reports about President Obama’s budget proposal that was released today at 11:30 AM Eastern Time. A small section of the sweeping budget plan has the potential to become a major impediment to a recovery in real estate markets across the nation. NAR is 100% opposed to the provision that modifies the Mortgage Interest Deduction and is prepared to use its formidable array of resources against its enactment.
As currently drafted, the plan changes the Mortgage Interest Deduction by reducing the amount of mortgage deductibility on families earning over $250,000. This proposed change in the Mortgage Interest Deduction will result in further erosion of home prices and home values. If this proposal is enacted it will lead to a new round of price depreciation, will cause greater distress on the balance sheets of banks as the collateral value of mortgage backed securities declines. A second credit crisis could emerge before the first one is resolved.
As you read this NAR is launching a multiphase plan of action to eliminate this provision from the budget plan. In the next 24 hours, NAR will be expressing our concerns directly to President Obama, to all members of the United States House of Representatives and the Senate, placing advertisements in the publications read by Washington, DC decision makers. Additionally, NAR will be forming a coalition with other groups affected by this proposal.
This communication is the first part of our response, we will continue to update you as the situation and events warrant.
Charles McMillan, CIPS, GRI
2009 NAR President
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 28, 2009
Hi Wayne, couldn't agree more - the high end is already sluggish to stagnant, this certainly will not help. Good question, I'll enjoy reading what others have to say as well.

Jeanne Feenick
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0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 28, 2009
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