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Tax Day 2011: What's new for homeowners

Homeowners who got the first-time homebuyers tax credit in 2008, beware. You have to start paying it back on Tax Day 2011. But other homeowners are in line for new deductions.

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Recent homebuyers will need to pay attention to how they might be affected on Tax Day 2011.

Mario Anzuoni/Reuters/File

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The nation's embattled homeowners may find some financial solace this year as Tax Day rolls around on April 18. A slew of credits and deductions can help ease the overall bite of federal taxes.

Below you'll find a reminder of some of the main tax benefits that come along with the costs of owning a home. The tax benefits may be especially welcome at a time when the home values in many parts of the country remain far below their pre-recession peak.

But first, a warning about the opposite situation, a new tax burden on some Americans with mortgage payments: If you purchased a home in 2008 and reaped a special tax credit for first-time homebuyers, pay attention this year.

It turns out the tax credit, designed to stimulate home sales during the recession, is more like a no-interest loan. Homebuyers need to pay it back, in 15 equal installments, starting in the 2010 tax year that's now coming due.

"To repay the credit, you must attach a completed Form 5405 to your tax return each year" starting in 2010, the Internal Revenue Service says in a news release. The IRS includes further details noting some exceptions to the rule and what happens when people sell the home before 15 years go by.

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