Some homebuyers may now be eligible for a limited tax credit thanks to the Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC) Program. Introduced this week by the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA), the mortgage credit certificate lets qualified homebuyers claim a tax credit that reduces, on a dollar-for-dollar basis, their federal income tax liability, if any, for the life of the loan. The mortgage credit certificate provides this benefit as long as the home remains the homeowners’ primary residence.
“Realtors® who work with first-time homebuyers would be particularly interested in the Mortgage Credit Certificate Program and may want to let their clients know about this option,” said Kate Newton, PHFA Homeownership Division director. “This is a different and unique program that provides another way to make owning a home more affordable.”
Homeowners can claim up to 50 percent of the mortgage interest they pay each year, not to exceed $2,000. The remaining mortgage interest paid may be claimed as a deduction per IRS guidelines. A mortgage credit certificate is to be used in conjunction with a first mortgage under PHFA’s Keystone Government (K-Gov) or HFA PreferredTM or Preferred Risk SharingTM programs.
“We’re excited about this new home loan product that gives our customers another attractive mortgage option,” said PHFA Executive Director and CEO Brian A. Hudson Sr. “During the past 18 months, PHFA has responded to changing market opportunities with a variety of new mortgage programs. Our Mortgage Credit Certificate Program is yet another initiative by PHFA to help Pennsylvanians achieve their dream of homeownership.”
In addition to the MCC Program, eligible borrowers may also qualify for down payment and closing cost assistance from PHFA with the agency’s Advantage Loan Program.
Qualified homebuyers can apply for the MCC Program through PHFA’s network of participating lenders. For more information, homebuyers should call 800-822-1174 during weekday business hours to talk with a PHFA customer care representative. They also can visit the agency’s website at PHFA.org and explore the information available under the blue header at the top of the screen for “Homebuyers, Homeowners, & Renters.”