Many federal residential tax credits expire at the end of this year, and with the gridlock in Washington they're not likely to get extended or renewed anytime soon. Here's what to do to be sure you get your 30% energy tax rebate.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PRLog (Press Release) – Sep 19, 2010 – Federal tax credits for energy conservation are set to expire December 31, 2010. These residential energy incentives cover: 1) high-efficiency heating, venting, and air conditioning equipment (including boilers, furnaces, and air source heat pumps), 2) high-efficiency water heaters, 3) high-performance windows, storm windows and doors, 4) insulation
weatherizing (weather stripping, caulk, sealant, house wrap), 5) roofing (special energy star rebates).
Until the end of this year, these energy tax rebates are for 30% of equipment and material cost, up to a $1,500 rebate*. State and local incentives must be deducted from your cost when applying for the federal rebate. In some cases installation costs are also covered. They are limited to existing homes and principal residences.
How Do I Lock-In My Federal Energy Tax Rebate?
First, you should do a home energy audit to identify which conservation measures are worthwhile. An audit can be as simple as walking from room and identifying energy users and energy wasters. With respect to the expiring tax credits: are your furnace, air conditioner, and water heater old or in disrepair? Are your windows single-pane without storm windows? Do they leak air? Are there air drafts or leaks around your doors, electrical outlets, etc.? Is your house air conditioned and with a dark-color roof, and a light-colored roof would be acceptable? Is your house well insulated? Detecting insulation and air-leakage problems may require a more advanced audit with specialized tools.
Second, be sure your planned improvements qualify. They must be on an existing home, and your main residence. Major equipment such as heating and cooling systems as well as hot water heaters must meet minimum efficiency requirements. Insulation, weather stripping, caulks and sealing foams must have a manufacturer's certification statement. Windows, storm windows and doors must also meet performance requirements. Only certain "energy star" roofing materials, with special coatings or "granules" qualify. Other requirements may apply to any of these measures.
Finally, be sure and purchase everything before 12/31/2010. For the weatherizing items (insulation, sealing, windows), the tax credit doesn't cover installation costs. You can install them yourself, or have a contractor do the work, and still get the equipment and materials rebate. * Credits for the heating, cooling, and hot-water equipment includes installation labor.
Be sure installation is completed by the end of this year to maximize your federal credit. If your energy tax credit exceeds your taxes due for 2010, they can be carried forward to future years.
You can then file for the federal credits as part as your 2010 IRS personal income tax filing. This release is not tax advice. Be sure and consult a tax adviser, and reputable contractor, before committing to major expenditures .
Most energy conservation measures will pay for themselves in savings, and help the environment. But in a tough economy, every little bit helps. And a 30% rebate is a pretty big little bit. Don't let your residential energy tax credit slip away.!