From Brittany on September 6th, 2011 in Window Replacement
The deadline is fast approaching for homeowners to save money by spending it.
Many homeowners are realizing the benefits that come with home improvements like adding insulation and replacing old windows. These upgrades boost the value of your property, and can immediately make your home more comfortable by filtering sunlight, providing insulation against winter cold and eliminating drafts.
Window replacement saves you up to 40% on heating and cooling costs. Insulation saves you 30% or more. The benefits, however, don’t stop there.
To get pricing on a home upgrade in your area, click here.
When considering home improvements, some fail to take into the account the savings from available rebate and incentive programs. The federal government offers a tax credit for a variety of home improvements that increase your home’s energy efficiency.
Many states offer incentive programs as well, as do a number of cities throughout the country. Utility companies may also offer programs. Most incentive programs are for tax credits. Some offer home loans for energy-efficient home improvements. But you may need to act fast.
Time is running out to apply for the federal tax credit for purchasing insulation or energy-efficient windows. The popular tax credit program expires at the end of 2011. The credit applies to materials only. For insulation, the credit is 10% of the materials cost, up to $500. For Energy Star windows, the credit is 10% of the cost of materials, up to $200. Read the window tax credit details here.
Developed by the Environmental Protection Agency, the Energy Star program has a set of criteria that products must meet to earn the Energy Star label. Windows are required to be 15% to 40% more energy-efficient than those typically used in construction. In addition, climate-specific criteria must be met.
The criteria are determined by assessing how much heat and light the window allows through, and by how much insulation it provides. Variations of these values allow window brands to produce energy-efficient windows for any climate. The Energy Star label makes it simple for you to make sure that the windows you buy will save you energy – and money – over the long run.
Rebate and credit programs are often scheduled to last a single year. States and municipalities want to review the success of programs, as well as examine annual budgets, before extending incentives. In today’s economy, it’s hard to predict which programs will be continued and which will not. Some rebate programs are simply so popular that they run out of funds before they expire.
To get the full benefits from all available programs, the sooner you check price information, the better.
A window contractor is often your best source for information about incentive programs in your area, as contractors realize that saving you money is in their best interest, too. Your local contractor can also tell you how much you’ll save on an ongoing basis through energy savings in your particular area.
Photo via Flickr CC