History Tested Foreclosure Mitigation: Accessory Apartments

Accessory apartments benefit society and the economy, and it's time for tax credits to promote them, according to this oped from Patrick H. Hare and George W. Liebmann.
February 2, 2009, 7am PST | Nate Berg
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"Home improvement contractors and appliance manufacturers face economic recession. Millions have over-invested in housing, and many would welcome rental income to avoid foreclosure. Politicians seek stimuli for the economy that do not involve "trickle-down" bailouts or indiscriminate gifts that may be hoarded rather than spent. States struggle with exploding budgets for Medicaid nursing homes because elderly people who want separate apartments cannot live near their children."

"We advance a modest proposal: a temporary, three-year tax credit of $5,000 or one-half installation cost - whichever is less - for new, accessory apartments in owner-occupied homes. The proposed credit is temporary because it pays people to do what ultimately is in their interest; it is a publicity device as much as an incentive, and can be removed once accessory apartments become a popular option for builders, homeowners, renters and contractors. Tax credits, rather than financing incentives or grant programs, are appropriate because with the aid of Form 1040 and the tax preparation profession, they would get the word out much faster than programs trickling down from bureaucracies."

Thanks to Patrick Hare

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Published on Thursday, January 29, 2009 in The Baltimore Sun
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