According to the U.S. tax code, filers who itemize are generally allowed to deduct the mortgage interest and real estate taxes paid on their primary residence. The real estate literature recognizes this homeowners' tax benefit and it is considered when homeownership user cost is calculated. However, recent studies overestimate the value of the homeowners' tax benefit mainly because they ignore the value of the standard deductions relative to non-housing-related deductions. We use recent tax data to empirically show that the actual direct tax benefit to U.S. homeowners is about 1/2 to 3/4 of the tax benefit value used in many recent studies. Our results indicate that the tax benefits associated with the purchase of a home are overestimated, on average, by $4,618. Moreover, for many U.S. homeowners the overestimated tax benefit is even larger in both percentage and dollar terms.