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President Bush and Your Mortgage

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Are you a homeowner with a mortgage? President Bush is planning to take money out of your pocket.

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The tax reform commission appointed by President Bush agreed this week to recommend a significant reduction in the amount of mortgage interest a homeowner can deduct from their taxes. If a nationwide cap on mortgage interest deductions is established following the commission’s recommendations this could have a significant impact on your pocketbook. The panel alleges they tried to take into consideration the disparity in home values from state to state; their recommendation has a ceiling based on the local housing market. The panel did not disclose how this limit on mortgage interest deduction would impact second homes or investment properties.

This Presidential commission, called the President’s Advisory Panel on Federal Tax Reform, does not set policy, they only make recommendations. The panel will meet once more on October 18th to finalize the recommendation before submitting them to the Treasure Department. Opponents of the commission’s recommendations state that the mortgage interest tax deduction helps foster homeownership, which is good for the community and the individual. President Bush asked the panel to find ways to make the Tax Laws simpler and better suited for economic growth. On this count they have failed miserably. The President also told them the recommendations they make should not cost the government any money.

The President’s panel has no estimate of how much revenue will be generated by cutting back the mortgage interest deduction; however, according to the White House, the potential revenue generated would be just under 1.2 trillion dollars.

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