LANSING, Mich. — Senate Bill 395, sponsored by Senator Vincent Gregory (D–Lathrup Village),  passed out of the Senate Finance Committee yesterday. This legislation would provide an income tax credit to taxpayers who improve accessibility or provide visitability in their homes.

“Improving physical access in our homes helps to eliminate barriers and provides greater opportunities — especially with regards to employment and social freedoms. The architectural features of a home influence the quality of life and independence of not only the resident, but also others who may have physical limitations to their everyday lives,” Sen. Gregory said.

To earn the tax credit, the renovations must meet accessibility or visitability standards and be certified by the Michigan State Housing Development Authority. The credit can be claimed for either 4 percent of the total purchase price of a qualified principal residence or up to 50 percent of the cost to retrofit an existing residence. The amount of the credit would be capped at $5,000.

Sen. Gregory worked closely with the Multiple Sclerosis Society and other organizations to develop legislative solutions to improve the daily lives of individuals and their families living with physical limitations, but was quick to point out that accessibility credits benefit everyone.

“My hope is that this bill will alleviate some financial burdens and help our older adults and disabled individuals stay in the comfort of their own homes, and communities, for as long as they are safely able to do so,” Sen. Gregory said.

The legislation now heads to the full Senate for a vote.