If you felt like you missed out on the Energy Star tax credits that expired at the end of 2010, all is not lost. New Energy Star tax credit guidelines are in place for 2011. Home improvement items have high marks for energy saving features and are designated through a federal program as Energy Star products.
The tax credits are for owners of both new construction and existing homes, but not rental properties. Only designated product brands and styles qualify. Products eligible for a 10% tax credit in purchases through the end of the year up to $500 include metal and asphalt roofs, biomass stoves, non-solar water heaters, certain types of insulation, heating, air conditioning, ventilation, doors and windows.
Tax credits of 30% with no cap on the amount are in place through Dec. 31, 2016 for geothermal heat pumps, solar energy systems and small residential wind turbines.
The City of Austin and our residents are always striving to be a greener city, and it is clear we are making progress. Austin ranked in the top 25 in the nation for cities with the most Energy Star certified buildings in the country in 2010.
If you are thinking about making some home improvements this year, keep the tax credits in mind. They are not as extensive as the ones that ended last year, but they will help you have a greener Austin home and save a few bucks in the process.