Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, I had the opportunity to talk with Sen. Bob Mensch, who introduced SB 309, along with Rep. Rosemary Brown (R-Monroe), who introduced similar legislation in the House. House Bill 128 passed the House and is currently being reviewed by the Senate Urban Affairs and Housing Committee. Both Brown and Mensch have been strong advocates for homeownership.
The First-Time Homebuyers Savings Account program would allow Pennsylvanians to save money toward the purchase of a home and the money saved would qualify as a tax deduction for their state income tax. Parents and grandparents would be eligible to save for children and grandchildren as well.
Many first-time homebuyers need help overcoming obstacles to homeownership and will be looking for additional assistance following the pandemic.
The First-Time Homebuyers Savings Account Program could result in an increase of home purchases of up to 4,000 annually in Pennsylvania, according to research conducted by the Anderson Economic Group. The increase in the number of home purchases would have an overall positive impact on Pennsylvania’s economy, spurring additional economic activity, job creation. It’s estimated that the economic impact could range up to $68.8 million. State tax revenues collected from realty transfer taxes could also see an increase with these additional home sales.
To learn more about the proposed Pennsylvania First-Time Homebuyers Savings Account Program, visit FirstHomePA.com.
House Bill 523 would provide statutory language establishing shared responsibility among property owners for private roadway maintenance in situations when a private maintenance agreement is not in place.
Both Dan Durden, the CEO of the Pennsylvania Builders Association, and Dr. Robert Dietz, chief economist for the National Association of Home Builders, reported that costs of building materials have been increasing dramatically.
Chad Dion Lassiter, the executive director of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission, said the Fair Housing Act recognizes that housing is not just a fundamental right, but a human right and that housing discrimination is pervasive.