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Home Energy Tax Credits, Rebates Still Available

You still have time to take advantage of tax credits and rebates for making your home more energy efficient.

You still may qualify for tax credits and rebates if your home needs an energy-related improvement such as more insulation or a new water heater.

However, you need to act fast. Tax credits provided in the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, also known as the stimulus package, for home energy improvements are set to run out at the end of the year. That means you need to make purchases and have any equipment installed by Dec. 31 to be eligible for the credits or rebates.

Improvements that possibly qualify for the tax credit include replacing or installing insulation; windows; doors; and heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment, says Carl Pedersen, North Dakota State University Extension Service energy educator.

One exception to the Dec. 31 deadline is ground-source heat pumps. The tax incentive for those systems extends until 2016.

The tax credit for energy-related improvements is for 30 percent of the cost of the qualifying improvement up to a maximum of $1,500. However, some improvements, such as geothermal heat pumps, small wind systems, solar water heaters and solar panels, are not subject to the $1,500 limit.

Installation costs, such as site preparation and wiring, for HVAC systems, water heaters, solar panels, geothermal heat pumps, wind energy systems and fuels cells qualify for the credit, but the cost of installing windows, doors, insulation or roofs is not eligible.

For more information and to see what qualifies, go to http://www.energystar.gov and click on the Tax Credits for Energy Efficiency tab. The ENERGY STAR website also has a FAQs (frequently asked questions) section that is updated constantly to provide answers to questions about its programs.

The stimulus package also provided money to states to offer rebates for energy efficiency improvements. In North Dakota, the rebates are administered through local electric, natural gas and propane providers and are for residential and commercial applications. The qualifying improvements vary throughout the state, so check with your supplier to determine what is eligible, Pedersen advises.

NDSU Agriculture Communication

Source:Carl Pedersen, (701) 231-5833, carl.pedersen@ndsu.edu
Editor:Ellen Crawford, (701) 231-5391, ellen.crawford@ndsu.edu
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