Stimulus includes breaks for saving energy

Published 10:18 pm Thursday, March 5, 2009

Alabamians can now get more value for energy-conservation in their homes thanks to increased tax incentives, according to the Energy Division of the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 signed by President Barack Obama extends and upgrades federal tax breaks for homeowners who improve their homes and conserve energy by purchasing and installing energy-efficient products.

“Bigger tax credits are just one of the benefits of energy-conserving investments,” ADECA Director Bill Johnson said.

“Tax breaks effectively cut the purchase price of many energy-efficient products, and consumers continue to save each month because of lower utility bills.”

Homeowners can now claim up to $1,500 in tax credits for installing new insulation, Energy Star windows, energy-efficient heating and cooling systems and reflective roofing in their homes in 2009 or 2010.

The act increases the credit to 30 percent of the price of making the improvements and eliminates the limits on credits that could be claimed for specific items, replacing it with maximum of $1,500 that can be claimed as a tax credit.

The act also removes a $2,000 tax-credit limit for residents who install solar panels, solar-powered hot water systems or geothermal heat pumps.

Now, homeowners who install these products are eligible for tax credits of 30 percent of the installed cost, with no limit. The credits are available for systems installed 2008-2016.

For more information about these and other federal incentives, visit and select federal incentives or call ADECA’s Energy Division at (800) 392-8098.