Energy Efficiency Window Closing on Home Energy Efficiency Tax Credit

Published on October 13th, 2011 | by Charis Michelsen


Too Late — No More Tax Credits For Energy Efficiency (Soon)

October 13th, 2011 by  

After six years of tax breaks for buying energy efficient appliances, the federal door is closing. They’re done trying to thank consumers for some sense of responsibility. The incentives are over at the end of 2011 – any applicable items must be not only bought but installed by December 31st in order to still be eligible.

For those on the fence, the effects of energy efficient items can be hard to quantify. A drafty kitchen door is hard to ignore, but buying a cheaper air conditioner might seem like the obvious choice. For the more expensive but more efficient items, payback in the form of lower energy bills has to come fast or not at all. According to a poll taken by Emerson Climate Technologies, only 29% of respondents would be willing to invest $5,000 if the payback were to be 10 years. Six months seems to be the longest most people are willing to wait.

The tax credit has been described as a way to get people thinking about energy efficiency, but many people didn’t even know it existed. Federal incentives, including tax credits, rebates, tax holidays, have been inconsistent at best; the tax credit, for instance, was first offered in 2005, disappeared in 2008, came back and now is nearly gone again.

Those of you who still want to take advantage of the tax credit need to file IRS Form 5695 (not available for the 2011 tax year yet) with your taxes. You also need receipts proving purchase and a copy of the manufacturer certification. You can also check out your state’s programs here.  If you just so happen to be building commercially, the credit isn’t going anywhere until 2014.

Manufacturers can certify in packaging or on the website which products qualify, and only items installed in or on the taxpayer’s principle residence in the United States are eligible. See the chart below for qualifying items and the corresponding credit.

Source: Sierra Club 
Get CleanTechnica’s 1st (completely free) electric car report → “Electric Cars: What Early Adopters & First Followers Want.”
Keep up to date with all the hottest cleantech news by subscribing to our (free) cleantech newsletter, or keep an eye on sector-specific news by getting our (also free) solar energy newsletter, electric vehicle newsletter, or wind energy newsletter.


Tags: , , , , , , , ,

About the Author

spent 7 years living in Germany and Japan, studying both languages extensively, doing translation and education with companies like Bosch, Nissan, Fuji Heavy, and others. Charis has a Bachelor of Science degree in biology and currently lives in Chicago, Illinois. She also believes that Janeway was the best Star Trek Captain.

  • Wahlink

    Thats really too bad. Of all the things stimulus money should be spent on its energy efficiency. It seems to me that an energy efficient ecosystem of jobs would be a win-win for everyone. Jobs, tax revenue, sales of new products…. Why this isn’t made permanent is beyond me. All of Washington has failed on this one.

    • Anonymous

      Hopefully, it will be renewed. But I wouldn’t put it past them to drop this..

Back to Top ↑
  • Advertisements

  • Top Posts & Pages

  • Cool Cleantech Events

    Low Voltage Electrification Event, April 25-27. Detroit, Michigan (US)
    Delve deep into the benefits and challenges associated with EV power supply.

    Offshore Wind Market Development USA, May 11-12, Boston, Massachusetts (US)
    Network and establish your business in one of North America’s largest energy industries.

    Energy Storage USA, June 15-16, San Diego, California (US)
    Only event in the United States focused exclusively on the commercialization of storage.

    More details are on: Cleantech Events.

  • Advertisement

  • CleanTechnica Electric Car Report

    Electric Cars Early Adopters First Followers
  • Tesla Model 3 Review by EVANNEX

    Tesla Model 3 Review from EVANNEX
  • Tesla Model 3 Exclusive Video

    Tesla Model 3 Video
  • Tesla Model 3 Exclusive Pictures

    Tesla Model 3 Video
  • Tesla Model X Review #1 (Video)

    Tesla Model X Review from new owners Zach Shahan
  • Tesla Model X Review #2 (Pictures)

    Tesla Model X Review from Kyle Field
  • Tesla Model S Long-Term Review

    Tesla Model S Long Term Review from Kyle Field
  • Nissan LEAF Long-Term Review

    Nissan LEAF Long Term Review from Cynthia Shahan
  • Interview with Michael Liebreich

    Interview with Michael Liebreich
  • Interview with Akon (Teslas & Solar)

    Interview with Akon Tesla Model S Tesla Model X Solar Power Africa
  • Interview with Dr Nawal Al-Hosany

    Interview with Dr Nawal Al-Hosany
  • Interview with Gro Brundtland

    Gro Brundtland
  • Interview with President of Iceland

    President of Iceland Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson
  • Interview with Nick Sampson

    Faraday Future VP Nick Sampson
  • Interview with Dipal Barua

    Dipal Barua 1st ZFEP WInner
  • Interview with Jonathon Porritt

    Jonathon Porritt
  • Interview with Clint Wilder

    Interview with Clint Wilder
  • Interviews with Solar Impulse Pilots

    Bertrand Piccard Andre Borschberg
  • Check out more CleanTechnica Videos.

  • Join The Solar Revolution!

    Edison-solar-energy solar-energy-spill-nice-day
  • Cost of Solar Panels

  • Search the IM Network