It wasn’t pretty, and the debate went well into the evening, but on June 30 the Senate passed a stand- alone bill that extended the date for closing on a tax credit-eligible home from June 30 to September 30, 2010. The bill passed the Senate on a voice vote in a process known as “unanimous consent.” A stand-alone bill is a single issue bill that contains just one provision (and, if needed, its “pay-fors.”) Stand-alone tax bills are a rarity in the Senate, but the urgency was well understood. Earlier in the week, the House had passed a stand-alone extension (HR 5623) by a vote of 409 – 5.
The White House has said that President Obama will sign the bill, although the timing for the signing is not yet known. The extension is seamless, so closings that occur between July 1 and the date the President signs the legislation will satisfy the requirements of the credit. In order to get the benefit of this closing date extension, the parties must have entered into a contract for the purchase on or before April 30, 2010.