Regarding the Sept. 14 letter, "Obamacare adds tax to some home sales":
The writer suggests that people who may be thinking of selling their homes should call a real estate agent or tax lawyer to find out if they will be subject to a 3.8 percent tax on the sale of their homes. This is a rumor being spread by individuals who want to put President Barack Obama in a bad light.
If the letter writer were to take her own advice and call a Realtor or tax lawyer she would discover that the 3.8 percent tax only comes into play when an individual making more than $200,000 or a couple with a joint income of more than $250,000 sell a home and make a profit of more than $250,000 for the individual or more than $500,000 for the couple.
It is important to understand the tax is only on the profit, and only if that profit exceeds the above-mentioned amounts. Not many Americans are making profits of $250,000 or $500,000 when they sell their homes in today's market. In fact it has been estimated that only 2 percent of Americans would be subject to this tax.
This is not a tax on the total sale price of a home.
This 3.8 percent tax will not be imposed on all real estate transactions.
Rather, when the legislation becomes effective in 2013, it may impose a 3.8 percent tax on some (but not all) income from interest, dividends, rents (less expenses) and capital gains less any capital losses.
This misleading tax scare has been kicking around the Internet for two years now. It's being perpetuated by chain letters sent by Obama haters.
In an effort to set the record straight, the National Association of Realtors has developed an informational brochure that can be accessed on the Internet at realtor.org/topics/health-care-reform.