One of the most popular items in the tax code this filing season will be the credit for homebuyers, although not everyone may immediately understand all of its provisions without consulting a professional to handle their return.

With that in mind, a report in Business Week recently offered people some advice on things they should be aware of when it comes to the credit, which was extended in late 2009 to help provide a further boost to the economy and especially the real estate sector.

According to the report, there are actually separate credits for first-time homebuyers and people who have owned a home in the past, and neither of them should be confused with the credit from 2008 that was described as being "a long-term loan."

Among the items to watch for, according to the report, are income levels and limits on a home's sales price, as well as provisions such as those barring rental homes and rental properties from receiving the credit.

"The first-time home buyer's credit has been expanded so that more homeowners now qualify for a tax break," said John Hewitt, CEO of Liberty Tax Service®. "People who have owned a home and used it as a principal residence for a 5-consecutive-year period during the 8-year period ending on the date of purchase of a new personal residence may qualify as first-time homebuyers and receive a credit of up to $6,500."

Several million consumers are expected to benefit from tax credits on home purchases this filing season - and to maximize their returns, many will be consulting with a professional preparer.

Every effort has been taken to provide the most accurate and honest analysis of the tax information provided in this blog. Please use your discretion before making any decisions based on the information provided. This blog is not intended to be a substitute for seeking professional tax advice based on your individual needs.