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Making dreams a reality

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To the editor:

In a recent report, the Minnesota Homeownership Center called homeownership “the ultimate statement of optimism.” As a realtor, I see families turn that optimism into reality every day. A key part in helping families live out their homeownership dream – a first home, a new place for a growing family, or a weekend getaway cabin – is the Minnesota mortgage interest deduction.

By reducing the cost of owning a home, the state mortgage interest deduction allows more families to enter the housing market. More homeowners equal a strong tax base that serves as the base for local government and essential public services. In addition to these benefits, from years of research we know homeownership is strongly associated with civic involvement, charitable participation and better outcomes in school. Eighty years after legislators enacted the state mortgage interest deduction, the deduction continues to facilitate homeownership and its positive benefits on a daily basis.

Some legislators in St. Paul would like us to believe otherwise. However, they fail to see the positive role homeownership tax incentives and savings plans play in our housing market and markets all across Minnesota. They also overlook that many real estate investment decisions have been made with current Minnesota law factored in. Any change to the mortgage interest deduction would pull the rug from under current Minnesota homeowners.

Why someone would want to eliminate or reduce the state mortgage interest deduction I’ll never know, but I do know the look on families’ faces when their dream becomes a reality. Let’s keep the dream of homeownership secure in Minnesota and ensure legislative action does not jeopardize the Minnesota mortgage interest deduction.

To voice your opinion on this topic to your elected officials, visit the website www.mnhomesmatter.com.

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