Talking Taxes

Michelle Singletary
Thursday, March 12, 2009; 1:17 PM

If you missed my Web chat yesterday, be sure to read the transcript. The chat was a day earlier than my regularly scheduled Thursday discussion, and Jim Dupree from the IRS, joined me.

There were dozens of questions we couldn't get to, so I'll post the answers to more next week, but here's one I can answer now:

Q: I purchased a new home in 2008. My closing date was Dec 30. I have already filed my taxes and received the $7,500 tax credit. I see that in the new stimulus package you get even more money back from the IRS and you don't have to pay that back. Is there any way I can qualify for the new deal?

A: Sorry, if you closed on your home in 2008, you are out of luck. The new deal or new tax credit of $8,000 is for folks who purchased their home from Jan. 2009 to Nov. 2009 (The qualifying date for this first-time homebuyer's credit is cutoff at the end of November).

And by the way I hope you realize that $7,500 isn't really a credit but a loan -- a 15-year loan to the IRS. It's interest free but I'm still not a fan of it.

Here are two columns about the difference in the two first-time home buyer credits:

* You Can Benefit, but Don't Get Caught by Details (Feb. 22)

* Before You Take That New Housing Credit . . . (Aug. 17, 2008)

The Power of Women

Business columnist Steven Pearlstein and Post Vice President Ben Bradlee recently posed this question to their online panel discussion group: Would the current financial crisis have happened, or been anywhere near as severe, if women had been in the top leadership positions on Wall Street? Read what the leaders had to say in Testosterone and the Crash (March 8).

Color of Money Question of the Week

This week's question was: How should you communicate your lack of money to your date?

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