What Colorado’s Green Tax Credits Mean for You

There are plenty of reasons to make energy savings part of your building or remodeling plans, and both state and local governments are taking steps to make tax benefits one of them.

The State of Colorado offers a credit of up to $8,000 for new purchases and $6,000 for existing homes for adding energy-saving features such as extra insulation, furnaces and duct sealing that equals or exceeds 2% of the home loan amount. Application must be made before closing on the loan. The amount of the benefit is based on the improvement in the Home Energy Rating System score and cannot exceed 50% of the total improvement cost. Details are available on the Colorado Energy Office website.

Colorado also offers a loan program that offers an array of different financing for commercial builders that advance the Colorado Energy Office’s mission of creating jobs, reducing long-term consumer costs associated with energy, improving Colorado’s energy security, and promoting environmental stewardship. The program is designed to help builders incorporate energy-saving features into construction projects when private financing is difficult or impossible to obtain.

Many counties, cities and towns also have incentives for energy-saving that are too numerous to mention here. You can get detailed information on the tax incentives and rebates for specific Colorado state, county, and city green incentives from a database maintained by the University of North Carolina. Most of these programs have limited funding and may only be offered for specific periods of time, so use the database as a starting point, but follow through with the appropriate agency to confirm the program’s availability and limitations.

Additionally, utility companies such as Xcel Energy offer rebates and discounts on energy-saving products. Xcel offers rebates to businesses that purchase energy-efficient equipment for data processing, heating and cooling, lighting, and several types of production equipment including air compressors, motors, and commercial refrigeration, as well as periodic rebates to consumers for purchasing energy-saving appliances, fixtures, and lighting. Check your local utility’s website for current offers.

In a state with more than 300 sunny days each year, you might imagine there would be plenty of incentives to add solar heating and photovoltaic electric energy to homes and businesses, and you would be right. Colorado often appears on lists of the 10 most solar-conscious states with high per capita rates of installations, growth in solar job growth, and other measures. It has one of the strongest Renewable Portfolio Standards in the country, requiring investor-owned utilities like Xcel to get 30% of its energy from renewable sources like solar and wind. Colorado is also home to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, plus several growing solar manufacturing companies and solar training centers.

Residential photovoltaic systems and other renewable energy installations that supply electricity to a home or commercial building are 100 percent exempt from property taxes in Colorado. Property tax relief for some other forms of renewable energy like solar space heating, biomass or geothermal and others may be available on a local basis. To learn more about whether such systems are exempt locally, visit the Colorado Division of Property Taxation website or check with your local government.

As you can see, there are many different tax-savings opportunities when you upgrade your home’s or business’ energy efficiency, and they can be complicated and confusing. The pros at Allstar Electrical Service are familiar with the maze of rules and regulations for maximizing your investment in greening the environment.

Our experts are ready to explain your options and the best values for your particular situation. Just give us a call at 303-399-7420 or visit our website, allstarelectrical.com. We look forward to proving to you why we’re top-rated by the Better Business Bureau and were recently honored with a 2013 Super Service Award by Angie’s List. Be sure to visit our web site often to check on discounts, special offers, and coupons, too.