Home Tax Credits Qualifying for Tax Credits for the Energy STAR Program

Qualifying for Tax Credits for the Energy STAR Program

Qualifying for Tax Credits for the Energy STAR Program

Qualifying for Tax Credits for the ENERGY STAR Program

As a homeowner, you may be wondering how you can reduce your energy bills, improve your comfort and protect the environment. The ENERGY STAR program is a great solution for homeowners seeking to upgrade their home to be more energy-efficient. The program offers a variety of energy-efficient products to help homeowners save up to 30% on their energy bills and protect the environment from greenhouse gas emissions.

Moreover, the federal government has offered tax credits to homeowners who upgrade their homes using the ENERGY STAR program. This article will provide detailed information on how you can qualify for these tax credits.

What is the ENERGY STAR program?

The ENERGY STAR program is a government-backed program, which was introduced by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the mid-1990s. The program offers guidelines on energy efficiency and promotes the use of energy-efficient products to save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The program focuses on several areas such as homes, commercial buildings, and appliances.

The program’s goals aim to encourage people to use energy-efficient products and to reduce their carbon footprint. It helps homeowners make informed decisions when considering energy-efficient products and provides a way to measure energy efficiency. The ENERGY STAR label indicates that a product meets the standards required to reduce energy consumption without sacrificing performance.

Qualifying for Tax Credits

If you’re using the ENERGY STAR program to upgrade your home, you may qualify for tax credits. The federal government has offered tax credits to homeowners who make certain ENERGY STAR upgrades to their homes. These tax credits have been renewed and are now available through 2021. This means that you can receive a tax credit equal to 10% of the total cost of the installed improvements, up to $500 for all improvements, from 2018 through 2021.

The tax credits, however, are not for every change or upgrade that you make to your home. To qualify, you will need to upgrade your home using specific ENERGY STAR products. These include windows, doors, roofing, insulation, heating, air conditioning, water heaters, and heat pumps.

1. Windows

Upgrading your windows to the ENERGY STAR program offers immediate benefits. ENERGY STAR windows increase energy efficiency in your home and reduce the amount of heat escaping through your windows by up to 70%. They are also durable, require less maintenance than standard windows and can protect your furniture from fading.

To be eligible for the ENERGY STAR tax credit, you must install Energy Star certified windows and doors. The tax credit only applies to the window’s material cost, and not installation expenses.

2. Doors

ENERGY STAR certified doors offer multiple benefits to homeowners. These doors are designed to reduce drafts and air leakage in the home. They also offer increased insulation from temperature extremes, which can make your home more comfortable and energy-efficient.

To qualify for the tax credit, the doors must also be ENERGY STAR certified. The homeowner receives a tax credit for the door’s cost of materials only. Like windows, installation expenses do not qualify for the tax credit.

3. Roofing

Roofing plays a vital role in protecting your home from wind, rain, and other elements. ENERGY STAR roofing materials are designed to reflect solar heat and reduce the amount of air conditioning needed in your home. This helps to lower your electricity bills and reduce your carbon footprint.

ENERGY STAR roofing materials qualify for a tax credit of 10% of the total cost of materials, although the credit limit is $500. The credit is only available to homeowners for their primary residence.

4. Insulation

Insulation is a critical component to reduce energy loss within your home. ENERGY STAR insulation has higher R-values, which denotes resistance to heat flow. This means that your home will maintain a more consistent temperature throughout the year, reducing the need for heating and cooling.

The insulation must meet the 2018 IECC specifications to qualify for the tax credit. Up to 10% of the total temperature control insulation cost qualifies for the tax credit. Additionally, there is a limited $500 credit limit.

5. Heating and Cooling

Heating and cooling are vital to maintaining a comfortable home, but they are also important contributors to energy bills. ENERGY STAR-certified heating and cooling systems can lead to more efficient heating and cooling, and can save a considerable amount of money on energy bills.

In particular, heat pumps, which are used for both heating and cooling, are more energy-efficient than traditional furnaces and air conditioning units. Heat pumps use electricity to transfer heat from the air or ground outside of your home into your home during the winter months. In the summer, the process is reversed, releasing heat outside of the home. Upgrading to an ENERGY STAR heat pump offers tax credit eligibility for up to 10% of the installation cost, with a $500 credit limit.

6. Water Heaters

Water heating can account for up to 17% of your home’s total energy use. ENERGY STAR-certified water heaters are 15% more efficient than traditional models, which means lower energy bills and reduced carbon footprint.

The tax credit for ENERGY STAR-certified water heaters is 10% of the installation cost, up to $300. Additionally, the water heater must meet the ENERGY STAR standards of 0.82 energy factor, or an equivalent minimum thermal efficiency rating for gas water heaters.

How to Claim the Tax Credit

To claim the ENERGY STAR tax credit, you will need to ensure that the required criteria are met. These include:

-All products installed must be ENERGY STAR certified.

-The tax credit only applies to home improvements done between January 1, 2018 and December 31, 2021.

-The improvements must be made to your primary residence and not a rental.

-The improvements must be made in a way that is expected to last for at least five years.

-Keep all documents related to your purchases and installation expenses.

Fill out the IRS Form 5695, which is used for residential tax credits. The form can be submitted with your tax return to claim the tax credit.


Upgrading your home through the ENERGY STAR program is a smart investment. It can save you money on your energy bills, and you can also receive a tax credit. ENERGY STAR certified products make a significant impact in reducing your carbon footprint and greenhouse gas emissions.

To qualify for a tax credit, start by researching ENERGY STAR products such as windows, doors, roofing, insulation, heating, air conditioning, water heaters, and heat pumps. Make sure that they meet the specifications and that you keep all documentation related to purchases and installation expenses. Remember, these tax credits are only available from 2018 through 2021, so upgrade your home today and join the ENERGY STAR program.

The Energy STAR program pertains to the energy usage and environmental responsibility of many kinds of products, some of which can consequently be used to apply for IRS tax credits. It should be noted by prospective applicants for an IRA tax credit under this program that while Energy STAR standards as a whole govern over 40,000 products and their classification in the commercial marketplace, the number of products which can be eligible for the financial savings of IRS tax credits is far more limited.

The Energy STAR tax credits apply generally to the heating and cooling systems used in residences, and may provided to applicants, upon the successful admission of their request, if they fall within the limits that the program considers to constitute environmental responsibility.

The Energy STAR IRS tax credit is thus primarily directed toward the affordability of home ownership, but because its primary focus is on environmental responsibility, rather than the alleviation of poverty or financial problems, it does not establish an income level above which homeowners will be excluded from eligibility for IRS tax credits. In this sense, the program differs from other tax credit programs maintained by the IRS in that it is not “means based.”

The Energy STAR program for IRS tax credits was designed by its creators in the EPA to provide for the popularity of devices which are known to have an effect on the environment, such as air conditioners. Rather than banning such devices altogether, the provision is intended to control and limit the impact that these devices can have on the environment and allow homeowners to more easily act with responsibility toward the issue of greenhouse gases.

The website for the Energy STAR programs specifies the kinds of devices which may be used by a homeowner to apply for an IRS tax credit. The IRS tax credits are not provided to a builder or prospective owner before the residence is built, as part of a means for financing construction, but must be applied for after the home has been built and has been purchased to serve as a residence.

The kinds of devices and functions which are specified under the Energy STAR standards to be acceptable for receiving an IRS tax credit include “biomass stoves,” devices for “heating, ventilating, air conditioning (HVAC)” functions, “insulation” materials, “”roofs (metal & asphalt),” “water heaters (non-solar),” “windows & doors,” “geothermal heat pumps,” “small wind turbines (residential),” “solar energy systems,” and “fuel cells (residential fuel cell and microturbine system).”

Biomass stoves, HVAC devices, insulation material, metal and asphalt roofs, non-solar water heats, windows and doors all can receive an IRS tax credit of an amount no higher than $1,500, as can be determined based on thirty percent of the cost.

Geothermal heat pumps, small residential wind turbines, and solar energy systems can also receive an IRS tax credit of thirty percent of the cost incurred in their purchase, but without any limit. An IRS tax credit of thirty percent can be gained for each half kilowatt of a fuel cell’s capacity, for individual amounts of up to $500.