WASHINGTON, D.C. – April 14, 2011 – (RealEstateRama) — Bob Nielsen, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and a home builder from Reno, Nev., issued the following statement regarding President Obama’s speech today at George Washington University on deficit reduction:“President Obama today reiterated the importance of tax policy in promoting homeownership but endorsed limiting itemized deductions, including the mortgage interest deduction. Home owners cannot afford higher taxes at a time when the housing market is struggling to recover and contribute to economic growth.
“The President also suggested that many middle-class taxpayers do not benefit from the itemized deductions. In fact, the middle class is the primary beneficiary of the mortgage interest deduction. The reason most taxpayers itemize is because they are home owners, so it is not surprising that nearly 70 percent of the tax benefits associated with this vital tax incentive goes to households earning less than $200,000 a year. Any attempt to chip away at the mortgage interest deduction would represent an attack on middle-class families.”