Home Builders Will Oppose Republican Tax Bill

Donald Trump has promised that the Republican tax bill won’t touch the mortgage interest deduction. Property taxes will also remain deductible. That sounds like a bullet dodged for the homebuilding industry, right?

Nope. They are opposing the bill:

The plan nearly doubles the standard deduction, ends personal exemptions and likely repeals the deductions for state and local income and sales taxes. The combination would remove much of the incentive for the mortgage-interest deduction outside the highest-cost areas and could potentially hurt home prices.

Here’s the deal. Itemizing only makes sense if your itemized deductions are bigger than the standard deduction in the first place. A bigger standard deduction means that for some people, there’s no incentive to itemize at all, and that includes itemizing the mortgage interest deduction. And that means there’s no extra incentive to buy a house because you’ll get to deduct the mortgage interest, thus saving money.

So the homebuilding industry is opposed. Taxes are hard.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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