First-Time Homebuyers Jumping In? Survey Says …

I came across a survey that was recently completed in the first quarter of 2009, by the Richmond Association of REALTORs, surveying their members regarding whether or not the First-Time Homebuyers Credit was actually taking effect in the market. Questions ranged from are your clients applying for the $8000 credit? to should the credit be even higher than $8000?, and even ranged into whether respondents supported President Obama’s proposed change to the Mortgage Interest Deduction. The results?

A mixed bag, really. But it’s interesting to see how respondents, well, responded.


26% of respondents said that their buyers had applied for the $8000 First-Time Homebuyers Credit, but the majority of those said that the credit wasn’t a part of their client’s decision. Not surprisingly, most respondents also said that more buyers would enter into the market if more money was made available – well, duh. Most agents, at least the ones responding to this poll, seemed to feel as if the First-Time Homebuyers Credit was making a small impact, but nothing of real significance.

My area, the New River Valley, hasn’t conducted such a poll, but from my perspective the credit has gotten more buyers off the fence. Most of the buyers I’m currently working with are first-time buyers, in all price ranges, and every one of them has said that the $8000 First-Time Buyer Homebuyers Credit had an impact on them deciding to buy right now.

So what are you seeing?

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6 Responses to First-Time Homebuyers Jumping In? Survey Says …

  1. Brian Block says:


    I’m seeing the same thing here in Northern Virginia. Although $8,000 might not be a huge amount, every little bit helps when you are a first time homebuyer. Many of those that have gotten off the fence have mentioned the tax credit as an incentive.

  2. Lisa Noon says:

    Tom Wilson in the Roanoke Valley said the same thing in this morning’s news conference on Virginia home sales: lots of first-time buyers jumping into their market with these incentives. Let’s hope it keeps spreading across the Commonwealth. Home sales report was just posted today and is available at

  3. Lisa Noon says:

    You can also listen to the news conference in an mp3 file if you’d like to hear from other Realtors like Tom, and economists/analysts talk about first quarter sales. That’s posted at

  4. CAAR President-elect Greg Slater did some similar research that definitely shows that first timers are dominating this market right now. His research can be found at

  5. Almost all of the buyers I am working with are first time home buyers as defined by the rules of the $8000 tax credit, and most of them know about the tax credit before I even talk to them about it. As of right now the tax credit is not moving them forward any faster then they otherwise would. I think that will change as we move closer to the December 1 deadline though. I have plenty of home buyers who are very scared and waiting as long as they can to see what is going to happen with real estate prices. The US congress screwed up when the lowered the tax credit from 15K to 8K.

  6. Jeremy Hart says:

    It’s nice to see more of the same around the state. Sure, a credit’s not going to flesh out everyone, but it seems that it’s hitting some of the right buttons. Don’t forget VAR’s flyer regarding the credit, as well – download it at

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