Federal Solar Incentive/Rebate??

ArkansasoffgridArkansasoffgrid Solar Expert Posts: 118 ✭✭
Is the 30% federal incentive legitimate, and if so what all hoops/hurdles are involved?
8-420AH US Battery L-16s, Midnite Classic 150cc, Whiz Bang Jr, Magnum MS4448PAE inverter/charger,  4590w Canadian Solar panels. Honda EU2000i generator.

Comments

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,359 admin
    Re: Federal Solar Incentive/Rebate??

    It was real--Not sure, but they are schedule to "expire soon".

    http://www.dsireusa.org/incentives/incentive.cfm?Incentive_Code=US37F
    Established by The Energy Policy Act of 2005, the federal tax credit for residential energy property initially applied to solar-electric systems, solar water heating systems and fuel cells. The Energy Improvement and Extension Act of 2008 extended the tax credit to small wind-energy systems and geothermal heat pumps, effective January 1, 2008. Other key revisions included an eight-year extension of the credit to December 31, 2016; the ability to take the credit against the alternative minimum tax; and the removal of the $2,000 credit limit for solar-electric systems beginning in 2009. The credit was further enhanced in February 2009 by The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which removed the maximum credit amount for all eligible technologies (except fuel cells) placed in service after 2008.

    A taxpayer may claim a credit of 30% of qualified expenditures for a system that serves a dwelling unit located in the United States that is owned and used as a residence by the taxpayer. Expenditures with respect to the equipment are treated as made when the installation is completed. If the installation is at a new home, the "placed in service" date is the date of occupancy by the homeowner. Expenditures include labor costs for on-site preparation, assembly or original system installation, and for piping or wiring to interconnect a system to the home. If the federal tax credit exceeds tax liability, the excess amount may be carried forward to the succeeding taxable year. The excess credit may be carried forward until 2016, but it is unclear whether the unused tax credit can be carried forward after then. The maximum allowable credit, equipment requirements and other details vary by technology, as outlined below.


    Solar-electric property
    • There is no maximum credit for systems placed in service after 2008.
    • Systems must be placed in service on or after January 1, 2006, and on or before December 31, 2016.
    • The home served by the system does not have to be the taxpayer’s principal residence.

    Solar water-heating property
    • There is no maximum credit for systems placed in service after 2008.
    • Systems must be placed in service on or after January 1, 2006, and on or before December 31, 2016.
    • Equipment must be certified for performance by the Solar Rating Certification Corporation (SRCC) or a comparable entity endorsed by the government of the state in which the property is installed.
    • At least half the energy used to heat the dwelling's water must be from solar in order for the solar water-heating property expenditures to be eligible.
    • The tax credit does not apply to solar water-heating property for swimming pools or hot tubs.
    • The home served by the system does not have to be the taxpayer’s principal residence.

    Fuel cell property
    • The maximum credit is $500 per half kilowatt (kW).
    • Systems must be placed in service on or after January 1, 2006, and on or before December 31, 2016.
    • The fuel cell must have a nameplate capacity of at least 0.5 kW of electricity using an electrochemical process and an electricity-only generation efficiency greater than 30%.
    • In case of joint occupancy, the maximum qualifying costs that can be taken into account by all occupants for figuring the credit is $1,667 per 0.5 kW. This does not apply to married individuals filing a joint return. The credit that may be claimed by each individual is proportional to the costs he or she paid.
    • The home served by the system must be the taxpayer’s principal residence.

    Small wind-energy property
    • There is no maximum credit for systems placed in service after 2008.
    • Systems must be placed in service on or after January 1, 2008, and on or before December 31, 2016.
    • The home served by the system does not have to be the taxpayer’s principal residence.

    Geothermal heat pumps
    • There is no maximum credit for systems placed in service after 2008.
    • Systems must be placed in service on or after January 1, 2008, and on or before December 31, 2016.
    • The geothermal heat pump must meet federal Energy Star criteria.
    • The home served by the system does not have to be the taxpayer’s principal residence.


    Significantly, The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 repealed a previous limitation on the use of the credit for eligible projects also supported by "subsidized energy financing." For projects placed in service after December 31, 2008, this limitation no longer applies.


    Currently set to expire 12/31/2016 (last date you can claim credits for this year, or years past, on your Federal Tax Return--You could carry unused credits forward to the next tax year).

    So, if your federal tax bill is large enough that you can get the 30% returned on your taxes due--Then yes, it does work and is relatively easy to do (just fill out the forms and claim the deduction--and keep your receipts). Very few restrictions (on grid, off grid, some mechanical supports, wiring directly related to solar, etc.).

    As I understand--It was 10 years ago I got mine.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • ArkansasoffgridArkansasoffgrid Solar Expert Posts: 118 ✭✭
    Re: Federal Solar Incentive/Rebate??

    Looks like I'll need to "adjust" my Fed deductions @ work so I'll "owe" Uncle Sam about $3k next yr.
    8-420AH US Battery L-16s, Midnite Classic 150cc, Whiz Bang Jr, Magnum MS4448PAE inverter/charger,  4590w Canadian Solar panels. Honda EU2000i generator.
  • BilljustBillBilljustBill Solar Expert Posts: 212 ✭✭✭
    Re: Federal Solar Incentive/Rebate??
    Looks like I'll need to "adjust" my Fed deductions @ work so I'll "owe" Uncle Sam about $3k next yr.

    With all the super computers helping IRS, it's best to save all your sales receipts. I've heard that those "by mail desk audits" come easily, now. They'll want copies of all your expenses sent in first. If that doesn't look right, they'll notify you to call and set a date and time appointment...... The other "Fine Print" detail is that the system has to be operational to qualify for the 30% tax credit..
    Looks like you've got 3 days left....

    I can't get my system even close to completed for the 2013 taxes due April 15.... But then, if the dollar crashes to a worth of $.60 cents or less, in the coming 3 months as many are predicting, I'd bet the farm we'll owe those same taxes this time next year, with less money in the bank. It appears that 30% TAX CREDIT may look really good by then....unless they change that, too...:grr
    Bill
  • peakbaggerpeakbagger Solar Expert Posts: 341 ✭✭✭
    Re: Federal Solar Incentive/Rebate??

    Its simple to do, install a grid tied system, save the receipts and get proof that it is operational then do your taxes and take the credit. Unless you are low income or claim a lot of tax credits odds are you are eligible to claim it. Folks like low income or seniors with little tax liabilities are most likely the ones that could have issues. You cant count your own labor, but any other reasonable cost for or related to the installation is covered. Some folks try to cheat like replacing the roof under the premise that once the panels are installed that there needs to be a new roof as it will not be replaceable will probably not fly
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