First-Time Home Buyer Savings Act Passed out of the Ohio House of Representatives

First- Time Homebuyer act legislation update - house with money

One of the biggest purchases most people ever make is a house to call home.

Finding the finance to move from rented property to your first home purchase is a challenge.

The Columbus Team and many other REALTORS in Ohio felt that it was time to change this. We believe everyone should be encouraged and supported to make their dream of home ownership come true. 

We’ve been working hard behind the scenes lobbying our legislators to create a blueprint whereby the Government will help first time home purchasers save for their down-payment by making it tax deductible.

This is not a one-way street though. We know that when people move from rented accommodation to owning their first property there’s a lot of additional money that’s spent on building, decorating, furnishings and appliances. All of this helps to boost our local commerce and keeps our community suppliers and tradespeople in business.  

We reported in May 2019 that:

“Senators Theresa Gavarone & Bob Peterson introduced Senate Bill 139 in the Ohio Senate to create a tax deductive savings account for Ohioans.”

This was great news, and now we are delighted to report that last week our priority legislation, House Bill 186 the First-Time Homebuyer Savings Act passed out of the Ohio House of Representatives by a vote of 94-0.

House Bill 186 “Enact First-time Home Buyer Savings Act”  was introduced by Rep. D.J.Swearingen and Rep. Shane Wilkin, and co-sponsored by Reps. Carfagna, Carruthers, Click, Cross, Edwards, Gross, Hillyer, Ingram, Kelly, LaRe, Riedel, Seitz, Sobecki, Weinstein.

It will now go through the committee stages in the Ohio Senate.

Ultimately, it will allow first time home buyers to create a capped, tax-deductible savings account (this is not a tax credit). They can save as much as they want but can only deduct $3k for a single filer or $6k for joint filers annually. There is a lifetime cap of $15k and $30k respectively.

The money in the account must be used within five years to purchase a home. If the saver uses it for other purposes, then back taxes and possibly a 10% penalty must be paid.

Funds can be used on a down-payment and/or closing costs

The Proponents of this Act include: 

  • Ohio Chamber of Commerce,
  • Ohio Bankers League, 
  • Ohio Land Title Association, 
  • Ohio REALTORS, 
  • Ohio Manufactured Homes Association, 
  • Ohio Credit Union League, 
  • Ohio Realtists, 
  • Ohio Homebuilders Association 

It has NO opponents.

We are all helping to promote smart saving and financial responsibility and planning.

The bill now moves over to the Ohio Senate where it will go through the committee process. 

We will keep you posted on any further movements on this bill or you can follow its progress on the Ohio Legislature website.