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How to guide: Finding homeownership tax deductions

WASHINGTON – March 6, 2013 – Tax season is underway, and homeowners gearing up to meet the April 15 filing deadline can find the tax tips and insights they need at HouseLogic.com, a consumer website created by the National Association of Realtors® (NAR).

An overview of the tax benefits of homeownership, HouseLogic’s Homeowner’s Guide to Taxes helps filers get a general understanding and avoid common home-related tax mistakes.

“From the mortgage interest deduction to energy tax credits, many homeowners can take advantage of a variety of tax strategies that can lower their tax bill,” says Pamela Kabati, NAR senior vice president of communications and HouseLogic spokesperson. “For example, a family who bought a home last year with a $200,000, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage, assuming an interest rate of 4.5 percent, could save nearly $3,500 in federal taxes when they file this year.”

HouseLogic also offers tips to avoid unnecessary tax mistakes in 9 Easy Mistakes Home Owners Make on Their Taxes, which identifies common errors, such as deducting the wrong year for property taxes, confusing the escrow amount for actual property taxes paid and neglecting to take the private mortgage insurance (PMI) deduction.

Other possible deductions: Homeowners who make certain energy-efficient home improvements may be eligible for tax credits. Also, owners who had a portion of their mortgage forgiven as part of a workout plan, short sale or foreclosure don’t have to pay income tax on the forgiven debt, provided the mortgage was secured by a principal residence and the total amount of the outstanding debt is not more than the original purchase price plus improvements.

Other HouseLogic articles:

How to Deduct PMI
How to Deduct Mortgage Interest and Equity Loan Costs
How to Amend Your Tax Return
How to Claim Your 2012 Energy Tax Credits

Homeowners should consult a tax professional for specific advice about their own transactions or circumstances. Information on HouseLogic should not be relied on as tax or legal advice.

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