Viral Email Raises Real Estate Tax Fears

The email incorrectly states that ‘all real estate transactions will be subject to a 3.8% sales tax.’

WASHINGTON – July 26, 2010 – A viral email that keeps circulating seems to die out but then returns with a vengeance. Florida Realtors and the National Association of Realtors have received numerous calls from concerned members.

The email incorrectly states that “all real estate transactions will be subject to a 3.8% sales tax.” It then goes on to blame Democrats for inserting the language at the last minute into the recent health care package. To back up the email’s message, it includes an attachment that looks like a newspaper article from the Spokesman-Review, a Spokane, Wash., publication.

Part of the email is true: There is a new real estate tax that will help pay for Medicare, but it impacts a very small number of people. It applies only to sellers making more than $200,000 per year or $250,000 for couples.

The email fails to include information on the article, however, which is actually an editorial opinion of an outside writer and not a news piece. It was written by a representative of The Washington Policy Center (, which includes a link on its website outlining the group’s stance on health care reform.

The National Association of Realtors has created a page explaining the new law that includes rebuttals of the false email. It can be found here.

A Washington Post article created a fictional couple with a joint income of $300,000 (over the $250,000 limit) that made a $600,000 profit on a home sale. In the example, the couple could pay a new real estate tax equal to about $1,900. Read more about the Washington Post example.

© 2010 Florida Realtors®, reprinted by permission.

3 replies
  1. cyd
    cyd says:

    link for explanation

    Hi..the link to the NAR explanation isn’t working.. I went to the site but couldn’t locate it either.. do you have the correct link?

  2. sam johnson
    sam johnson says:

    government hidden taxes

    toby,anyone surprised if this is indeed real should jump off a bridge. the healthcare reform is a joke. if anyone of your readers owns a company they should be frightened
    i am sure everyone is aware of the 2k tax if they do not supply insurance for employees if the company has over 50 employees,but i bet no one is aware that the employer will be taxed if the employee has a spouse who has health insurance from thier job,and the employee waives out of coverage,the employer will be taxed 3k per occurence
    welcome to the world of obama

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