WASHINGTON – The National Association of Home Builders applauded the House of Representatives for passing a housing stimulus package that will address the turmoil in financial markets and bolster the faltering economy. NAHB called on the Senate to move quickly to pass the legislation before Congress adjourns for its August recess so that the President can sign the bill into law.

“With the U.S. financial system now under extreme duress, H.R. 3221 represents a thoughtful, comprehensive approach to address the housing and economic crisis facing the nation,” said NAHB President Sandy Dunn, a homebuilder from Point Pleasant, WV. “This bill is vital to restore confidence and get housing and the economy moving again.”

The centerpiece of the bill to help stimulate housing and the economy is a temporary, $7,500 first-time home buyer tax credit for the purchase of any home. The tax credit can be used for homes purchased between April 9, 2008 and July 1, 2009. It is expected to spur home sales, eliminate excess inventory and bring otherwise qualified home buyers back into the market.

“The tax credit is the best stimulative measure,” said Dunn. “It will shore up home prices and halt the downward spiral in the housing market.”

H.R. 3221, contains several other provisions to jump-start housing, save jobs and restore confidence. The bill would:

- Modernize the FHA and permanently raise its loan limits.
- Give states authority to issue an additional $11 billion in mortgage revenue bonds.
- Reform the regulation of the GSEs and permanently increase the conforming loan limit to help buyers in high-cost markets.
- Enhance the Low Income Housing Tax Credit.
- Provide foreclosure relief that could help as many as 400,000 struggling homeowners.
- Provide tax relief for homeowners who don't itemize their deductions.

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