|3 Ways the New Tax Law May Affect You|
|There are some pretty big changes coming for homeowners as a result of the tax reform legislation enacted last December. The available deductions and exemptions may change depending on whether you itemize your deductions in 2018 or take the standard deduction. The effect of the new tax legislation will vary depending on a variety of factors such as income level, whether or not you have a vacation home, and which state(s) your home is in. Below is a brief overview of some of the changes and the impact they may have on homeowners. Consult a tax expert to find out how the changes will affect you personally.
Mortgage Interest Deduction – This lowers the cost of homeownership by letting owners deduct the interest they pay on their home, second home, and vacation home (so long as they aren’t rented out for more than two weeks a year) from their taxable income. The new tax law also lowered the cap for mortgages eligible for interest deduction from a million dollars to $750,000.
Mortgage Insurance – The deductibles for mortgage insurance costs and the value you receive from a short sale were not renewed in the new tax law.
Property Taxes – In the past, property taxes at the state and local level were deductible. The new law limits deductible property taxes to $10,000 per year.
To many real estate pros, home staging has gone from a luxury to a necessity. The National Association of REALTORS® found in a recent survey that sixty-two percent of sellers’ agents believe staging a home decreases the amount of time a home spends on the market, and a third say it increases the selling price.
The survey also found that staging can help buyers envision themselves living in that home. NAR’s Home Staging Report found that another 77 percent say that staging makes it easier for the buyers to visualize the property as their home. Staging can help transform a home into the type of residence that is demanded and desired in the market.
Some staging services that can be useful include photoshoot styling services. This involves prepping and photographing staged living areas to be featured in an online listing. This staging service is attractive because many home buyers are beginning their home search online and a nicely designed home can draw a buyer to the open house. Independent of how the market is, a staged home has a move-in ready feel and buyers will pay for it.
Of course, these benefits don’t come free. Staging services can cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars depending on the home’s condition, desired outcomes, size, and where it is and whether it is occupied or vacant. But home staging doesn’t have to involve a complete makeover. As NAR’s 2017 Profile of Home Staging shows, there are really three rooms one should consider staging: living room, kitchen, and the master bedroom.
Home buyers decide within eight seconds of seeing a home whether they like a home or not, according to the Real Estate Staging Association. That first impression can be long lasting. To help you learn more about the topic, we spoke with an NAR researcher and a Chicago-area stager and report on what they say. Access the video.