LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (C.A.R.) today placed an open letter advertisement in California’s six largest daily newspapers, calling on President Obama and Congress to preserve the mortgage interest deduction in its entirety during their “fiscal cliff” discussions.
“If the deduction is taken away, it would cost the average California taxpayer $3,940 annually; further, more than 694,000 California households would no longer be able to afford to buy a median-priced home.”
The letter, placed in a full-page ad in today’s Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, San Jose Mercury News, Sacramento Bee, U-T San Diego, and the Orange County Register, states any proposal that eliminates or attempts to alter in any way the mortgage interest deduction undermines a century-old commitment to the American Dream of homeownership.
“The mortgage interest deduction makes a substantial difference for lower- and middle-income families,” said C.A.R. President Don Faught, under whose signature the letter was written. “If the deduction is taken away, it would cost the average California taxpayer $3,940 annually; further, more than 694,000 California households would no longer be able to afford to buy a median-priced home.”
“While current discussions involve reducing the limit to $500,000 for a primary residence and eliminating it entirely for second homes, any attempts to reduce the mortgage interest deduction would not only have deleterious effects on homeownership, but also be tantamount to taking the first step toward wholesale elimination of this long-standing deduction,” the letter states.
A recent C.A.R. survey found that 79 percent of home buyers said that mortgage interest and property tax deductions were “extremely important” in their decision to purchase a home.
“The mortgage interest deduction plays an important role in buyers’ monthly budgeting. Without this tax advantage, housing affordability would be negatively impacted and potentially price out many would-be buyers,” said Faught.
The letter also asks the public to visit www.KeepTheMID.com to learn how they can contact their member of Congress and ask them to protect the mortgage interest deduction.
Leading the way...® in California real estate for more than 100 years, the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (www.car.org) is one of the largest state trade organizations in the United States, with more than 155,000 members dedicated to the advancement of professionalism in real estate. C.A.R. is headquartered in Los Angeles.