When your home needs some attention, whether it be cosmetic and/or efficiency improvement, it’s always better to try and do it affordably. The name of the game is to get more bang for you buck. However, this does not mean to scrimp on quality or performance of the products and services you purchase. The old adage of ‘you get what you pay for’ rings very true when it comes to home improvement.

There are several articles, tips and tricks out there on what you can do inside your home for energy efficiency which will in turn save you money on your energy bill. But what about actually installing the windows, insulation, new doors or roofing? That does add up. But thanks to The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, the energy tax credits can give you some relief from paying the full ticket price of the energy efficient products. The tax credits have provided incentive to homeowners to save energy while beautifying their home.

To review and research the tax credits available to you visit the Energy Star website. It will provide you with the most up to date information that is available. I have listed below some of the highlights from the Energy Star website of the new tax credits:
  1. Tax credits have been extended to 2010.
  2. Qualifying products have a tax rebate of 30% of the purchase price but only up to $1,500 total rebates of all products combined. These products include roofing, insulation, HVAC and water heaters.
  3. For windows, doors and skylights to qualify for the tax credit they must have been installed after February 17, 2009 and after June 1, 2009 the U factor and solar heat gain factor must be equal to or less than 0.30. This information can be found on the windows NRFC label.
  4. All eligible products must be installed and running from January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2010.
  5. All eligible products must be installed in the taxpayer’s primary residence.
  6. The products must have a Manufacturers Statement to qualify.
To further protect yourself, you will also want to keep all information regarding your products including:
  1. Manufacturer information – name, address and contact information.
  2. Make, model, serial numbers and/or other identifiers of the product.
  3. Manufacturers Statement that the product meets the standards and guidelines to be eligible for the tax credit.
  4. Any details on the component that proves that it is the proper model for the area of the home, such as climate zones.
  5. Any information that is required to be submitted with your taxes.