Maine Real Estate – Maine Receives Fed Money to Buy Foreclosed homes

Maine has received $19.6 million in federal funds to help communities buy and resell homes in foreclosure, according to the Portland Press Herald.

The funds are part of an effort to prevent communities and neighborhoods hardest hit by foreclosures from deteriorating. Which communities will benefit from the program is not known yet, but Michael Baran, acting director of Maine’s Office of Community Development, told the newspaper that Sanford will be a likely beneficiary.

The program is expected to help more than 150 moderate-income Maine families buy homes from the municipalities, which in turn will stabilize real estate values by taking properties off the market.



Housing Stimulus Bill Narrows The Second Home Tax Benefit

 Here’s a summary included in REALTOR Magazine Online (8/7/08) – “The housing-stimulus package that became law last week took a bite out of the home-sale exclusions for second-home owners.  Under both the previous and the current law, most homeowners can sell their primary residence and exclude as much as $250,000 of the gain if they’re single or $500,000 if they are married and file jointly.  To qualify for the full exclusion, owners typically must have owned the home and used it as their primary residence for at least two of the five years prior to the sale. In the new law, which takes effect Jan. 1 and affects property acquired after 2008, owners can’t exclude the gain from the sale of the home allocated to periods of  ‘nonqualified use.’ That refers to any period (after the end of 2008) when the property isn’t used by the owner, spouse or former spouse as a principal residence. For example, a married couple buys a home Jan. 1, 2009, for $600,000 to hold as an investment. On Jan. 1, 2012, three years later, they begin using it as their principal residence. They live there for two years and sell the property on Jan. 1, 2014, for $1.1 million for a profit of $500,000. Under the old law, they would have been able to exclude the entire $500,000 gain from their taxable income. But under the new law, they could exclude only two-fifths of the gain, or $200,000, since the other three-fifths would be considered attributable to the three years the home wasn’t their principal residence. Source: The Wall Street Journal, Tom Herman (08/06/2008)”

Maine Real Estate News – Half of BNAS Homeowners May Stay

A survey on the effect the closing of the Brunswick Naval Air Station will have on the local housing market was released Tuesday to a state panel.

The survey, which the Maine State Housing Authority presented to the Governor’s Advisory Committee, found that only 45% of Navy homeowners in the town definitely plan to sell their home when BNAS closes in 2011, according to the Times Record in Brunswick. Twenty-five percent of respondents said they don’t plan to sell their homes, and 30% said they weren’t sure. Few of the renters surveyed intend to stay in Brunswick.

The survey involved more than 800 responses from Navy personnel who own or rent homes in Brunswick.