Written by Realty Times Staff
As the 40th anniversary of Earth Day was celebrated last month, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reminds home owners that they can use fewer resources and save money by taking advantage of federal energy efficiency tax credits through the end of the year.
Home owners who purchase qualifying water heaters, windows, air conditioning units and other appliances, insulation and roofing can be eligible for tax code section 25C tax credit, equivalent to 30 percent of the cost. There’s a $1,500 overall limit for purchases made in 2009 and 2010.
“You can save money, save energy, and be a good steward of the Earth’s resources,” said NAHB Remodelers Chair Donna Shirey, a remodeler in Issaquah, Wash. “I can’t think of a more appropriate way to commemorate Earth Day.”
Carolyn Taylor of Columbia, S.C., enjoyed Earth Day with a new tankless water heater that supplies plenty of hot water for her active family of four. Remodeler and NAHB member Pete Williams of ATherm Remodeling in Columbia suggested the switch because it was less expensive than relocating her existing gas water heater during a whole-home renovation project.
When Williams told her about the energy-efficiency tax credit the family would also enjoy, that was the icing on the cake, Taylor said. “Any time you can do something that makes a home more energy efficient and saves you money, of course you should do it,” she said.
Remodeler Shawn Nelson in Burnsville, Minn., helped home owners combine the federal credits with a state program that offered rebates for qualifying windows as part of renovation projects he completed over the winter. Home owners can visit www.dsireusa.org for a list of incentive programs where they live.
In a statement last week to the House Ways and Means Committee, NAHB urged Congress to extend the section 25C credit past its December expiration date and to reinstate the section 45L $2,000 tax credit for builders of energy-efficient homes, which expired at the end of 2009.
A more generous credit for appliances that use renewable energy is in effect through 2016. The section 25D credit applies to 30 percent of the total cost of solar panels for electricity or hot water, wind power equipment and the installation of geothermal heat pump systems. This credit can be used in conjunction with new or existing homes.
“These renewable systems are more expensive up front, but may offer significant savings in the long term,” said NAHB Chairman Bob Jones, a builder in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. “Both the 25C and the 25D credits are worth investigating, and you’ll get helpful information from the NAHB Web site, your local home builders association or the NAHB Remodeler member you choose to help you with your renovation and improvement plans.”
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