2011 Tax Tips for Lakeland FL Homeowners – Tax Deadline April 18

2011 Tax Tips for Lakeland FL Homeowners - Tax Deadline April 18Have you filed your income tax yet? The tax deadline April 18th is fast approaching and there are questions home owners, sellers, home buyers and investors in Lakeland, Florida and around the country may have.

Are you prepared? While everyone’s financial situation is unique and I’m not a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), I do advise you seek a professional advice for your situation.

First-time homebuyer credit – generally you cannot claim the credit for a home purchase after April 30, 2010. There are however a few exceptions. If you entered into a written binding contract before May 1, 2010, to buy the home before July 1, 2010 and actually bought the home before October 1, 2010.  The first-time homebuyer credit is extended to certain qualified officials, such as military service members, on extended duty until July 1, 2011, whose duty service was outside the United States for at least 90 days. A binding contract must be entered before May 1, 2011 to claim the first-time homebuyer credit.

Short Sale and Foreclosure – cancelled or forgiven or partly forgiven debt on foreclosure or short sale may result in taxable income, however under the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act of 2007, you may be able to exclude up to $2 million of debt forgiven on your principal residence. I strongly recommend the advice of a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).

Homeowner and Seller Answers – Sellers if you sold your Lakeland main home in 2010, you may be able to exclude from income any gain up to a limit of $250,000 ($500,000 on a joint return in most cases). Your mortgage interests, property real estate taxes and other fees may be tax deductible. You may be able to deduct amounts of some energy efficient improvements, such as solar water heating costs, solar electric costs, small wind energy property costs, and geothermal heat pump.

Investors Answers – Do you recommend selling? This question is being asked mostly by absentee owners and investors. With investment properties, you have to take both – the good and the bad. While you have had the pleasure of getting top rent dollars with a great tenants and surely made profit along the way, I hope you also thought about “rainy days” as it is now and put money into a reserve account. For the losses accrued throughout this past year, the loss may be carryover to future gains on your tax return, depending on your situation. For this, I would definitely seek the advice of a CPA specializing in investment properties.

While I do recommend holding on to your property riding out the storm because the value of the property is only on paper until it is sold. However, your situation may warrant where there is no other alternative other than to sell. Give me a call and I will do my best to answer all your questions.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: CDV Transatlantic,Inc. is not associated with the government, and our service is not approved by the government or your lender. Even if you accept this offer and use our service, your lender may not agree to change your loan. If you stop paying your mortgage, you could lose your home and damage your credit.

Copyright © 2011 By Petra Norris * 2011 Tax Tips for Lakeland FL Homeowners – Tax Deadline April 18!*

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