President Obama earlier this week signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which contains provisions intended to help the housing market and create jobs that benefit the environment.
Among the housing provisions:
• An $8,000 tax credit for first-time homebuyers who purchase a principal residence between Jan. 1, 2009, and Dec. 1, 2009. The credit does not require repayment.
• Reinstatement of last year’s 2008 loan limits for FHA, Freddie Mac, and Fannie Mae loans.
• $2 billion in additional funding for the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, which provides grants to states and localities to address problems that can be created when whole neighborhoods are decimated by foreclosures.
The law also includes $7.22 billion for projects and programs that will protect and promote both green jobs and a healthier environment. These environmental areas include:
• $4 billion to assist communities with water quality and wastewater infrastructure needs and $2 billion for drinking water infrastructure needs. A portion of the funding will be targeted toward green infrastructure, water and energy efficiency, and environmentally innovative projects.
• $100 million for competitive grants to evaluate and clean up former industrial and commercial sites.
Source: National Association of Realtors