Going Green Pays Green

The time has never been better to cash in on all of the “going green” tax credits the government is offering. Many of these credits were introduced in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and are around through 2010.

As the cost of heat and electricity continues to rise, we see the importance of weatherization projects among green programs. It is found that homeowners save money each month on electric and gas bills when they create a more energy-efficient property; not to mention the upfront credit they receive when purchasing the energy-efficient product. The following types of energy-efficient products may be eligible for a 30% credit of up to a maximum of $1500:

  • Central air conditioning
  • Gas, propane, or oil hot water boiler
  • Natural gas or propane furnace
  • Home insulation
  • Reflective roofing
  • Energy efficient windows, doors, and skylights
  • Storm windows and doors

To be eligible for the credits, the energy-efficient products must be installed on an existing, primary residence. Therefore, new construction projects and rental home upgrades do not qualify. In addition to the above mentioned, the following products are available for 30%, no maximum credits through December 31, 2016:

  • Residential wind turbines
  • Solar water heaters
  • Solar panels

Purchasing a hybrid vehicle is another great way to save the environment and get some tax dollars back. The hybrid tax credit is claimed on the Alternative Motor Vehicle Credit Form 8910 as part of your 1040. Keep in mind that the most popular hybrid, the Toyota Prius, is not eligible for a tax credit. Tax credits for hybrids are phased out after an automaker has sold 60,000 eligible units of any hybrid vehicle. The phase out for Toyota and Lexus began on Oct. 1, 2006. However, Nissan, General Motors, and Ford still sell tax credit-eligible hybrid vehicles.

With upfront tax credits, lower monthly bills, and a chance to help save the environment- going green is a win-win!