Realtors, homeowners want conveyance tax lifted

Realtors and homeowners in Connecticut are hoping to get the state to abolish what they call a hidden tax homeowners must pay when they sell a house.

The conveyance tax was supposed to be a temporary tax to help offset a state budget shortfall in 2003. While realtors have been complaining about the tax since its start, most homeowners only learn of the tax after they sell.

City and town officials say they use the money generated to keep other taxes, like property taxes, down. Many cities now rely on the extra revenue and there are no plans to lift the conveyance tax.

"If we didn't have $5 to $6 million coming in, that would mean the individual homeowners who are not selling their house are going to have to pay it back and make up the difference," says Norwalk Mayor Dick Moccia.

Still, people trying to sell their home in the current weak housing market say the conveyance tax is one more hardship they have to put up with.

"Many people are losing money when they sell, but they still have to pay this tax at the time of closing," says Ken Delvecchio, of the Connecticut Association of Realtors.

People trying to sell their homes in the weak housing market say it's really cutting into their bottom line.

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