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More about Money and Your Home


I have had a chance to digest some of the stimulus money that is out there as it pertains to your home, and the more I read, the more I realize that you should not be talking to a builder or architect but rather your accountant.

I am actually half kidding. The basics: The credit is for products “only” that apply, and there is a 30 percent kicker on your taxes, up to $1,500 maximum. That number is good for high-efficiency furnaces, water heaters, insulation, windows and doors, even some appliances. Now, in my last post, I wrote about the average cost of replacing all the windows in your entire home, which would be around $20,000-$30,000. The maximum tax credit on that number is $1,500, but you can stretch that money out.

Here’s how: The windows that qualify need to be rated to a certain standard — a 0.30 U factor and 0.30 Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHG). But you do not need that on every window on your home. So depending on how your home is situated you may choose to put these higher-efficiency windows on a side that gets more sun or wind. Areas of your home that do not get blasted with harsh weather do not need the added upgrade and cost.

Then even with all that you still need to consult an accountant to make sure you qualify. Tax laws can be confusing. The fact is, new windows will lower your energy bills and add value to your home. And now you can even get a tax credit.

[Editor’s note: has a page of information and resources about the $1,500 energy-efficiency tax credit here.]

Photo courtesy of RogueSun Media on Flickr