Energy-efficient upgrades mean rebates, tax credits
If you’re planning to make some home improvements this year, you’re probably thinking about energy-efficient options, knowing they can save you money in the long run.
Whether you’re considering installing an energy-efficient tankless water heater, putting solar panels on your house, or adding a skylight, chances are you can find a program that will put cash back in your pocket for improving your home’s energy efficiency.
Here is where to look for rebates, tax credits and rewards for your energy-efficient home improvements:
When you think of energy efficiency, insulation and appliances probably come to mind. But a number of improvements can help reduce your home’s energy consumption, and many of them qualify for tax credits, rebates and incentives from a variety of sources.
The kind of improvements that can make your home more efficient and get you some cash back typically include: Solar energy systems (such as solar panels); tankless water heaters; solar-powered appliances; energy-efficient windows and doors; skylights and solar-powered blinds; wood or wood-pellet stoves; home wind turbines; and manufacturer rebates and incentives.
Federal tax credits
Although many tax credits for energy-efficient home improvements expired at the end of 2016, some are still available. The federal government offers a tax credit of up to 30 percent for home solar energy systems through Dec. 31, 2019, and there’s no upper limit on the credit, according to EnergyStar.gov.
In addition to federal programs, a number of states offer their own incentives to encourage homeowners to make energy-efficient improvements. For example, Alabama allows homeowners to deduct 100 percent of the purchase price and installation costs of a wood-burning heating system. In Minnesota, homeowners can borrow up to $20,000 at 4.99 percent interest to make energy-efficient improvements such as water heaters, lighting, furnaces, air conditioners, insulation, windows, tankless water heaters and more.
You can find a searchable Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency at dsireusa.org.
Utility company incentives
Many utility companies also offer programs designed to help homeowners reduce energy consumption and save money. Typical programs include free LED or CFL bulbs t replace incandescent bulbs in a home, and rebates or discounts for installing energy-efficient HVAC equipment or programmable thermostats.
The best way to find out what programs your local utility offers is to check out its website or call.
With a little bit of planning and legwork, you also can find rebates, tax credits and incentive programs that will repay your eco-friendly investment right away.
This article is courtesy of Brandpoint.