No More Tax Talk?

By S. Kim Henson

Who wants to think about April 15, 2012 when this year’s taxes are finally filled out and filed? However, planning ahead, especially if you’re fortunate enough to get money back, may mean 2010’s refund buys next year’s tax credit. When you upgrade to energy efficient products like a new HVAC system, water heater, or doors and windows, you save on utility bills as well as your income taxes.

Although 2011 tax credits are lower than former years, incentives continue to encourage homeowners to find ways to save energy and money. According to the home improvement tax credit for 2011, which expires December 31, 2011, you can recoup 10 percent of your cost for a home improvement project, up to $500.

Products that qualify for tax credits include energy efficient HVAC components, water heaters, biomass stoves, insulation, and doors and windows, as well as metal and asphalt roofs. Installation costs may be claimable. To find out more, research the government site for eligible products and restrictions that apply.