by Anne Maertens
If your New Year’s resolution is to shrink your carbon footprint or if you just want to save money on your utility bills, you may be able to significantly reduce your energy use and get money for doing it.
The federal government has extended the energy efficiency tax credit, commonly known as 25C, through 2011, but there have been a few changes. The credit now equals 10 percent of your efficiency upgrade costs up to $500, and some efficiency upgrades have credit caps. For example, the maximum credit for ENERGY STAR windows is now $200.
In addition to the federal tax credit, there are a bunch of incentives from the Connecticut Energy Efficiency Fund that you can use to help achieve your energy saving goals. For example, ductless heat pumps are eligible for a rebate of up to $1,000, and efficient hot water heaters are eligible for a $300 rebate.
The Fund also provides several financing solutions including zero-interest loans ranging from $7,000 to $20,000 and 2.99 percent interest loans ranging from $2,500 to $6,999. To find out if you qualify for the loan, you’ll need an energy assessment of your home.
If you’d like to know what an energy auditor might recommend for your home, check out EnergySavvy’s free online energy assessment, which will give you a list of recommendations on how to make your home more efficient. EnergySavvy also provides a list of the energy efficiency incentives available in Connecticut.