If these qualifications are met - a first-time homebuyer should be eligible to get a tax credit of ten percent of the purchase price of the house, up to a maximum of $8,000 or $4,000 for married individuals filing separately.
The realtors association explains, every dollar of the first-time homebuyer tax credit would reduce your taxes by a dollar. So, if you owe $9500 in taxes without the tax credit, and qualify for the full $8,000, you'll only owe $1,500. If your taxes are $6000, you'll actually get $2000 back.
However, if you sell the home or stop living there in 36 months, the IRS says you'll have to repay the credit. At least, that's better than the 2008 stimulus program. The first-time homebuyers tax credit in the 2008 stimulus program was really an interest-free loan for up to $7500 dollars, which means people have to pay it back over 15 years.
Of course, it's best to consult with a trained tax professional if you have questions about your specific situation. You can also educate yourself by learning more about mortgages or refinancing. And first-time homebuyers should also learn more about mortgage closing costs.