You may be eligible for a tax credit for buying a wind turbine. If you have been considering purchasing this renewable energy resource, now is the time, because in order to get your credit, your turbine must be installed by Dec. 31, 2016.
Saving energy is not only good for the environment, it’s good for your pocketbook. Installing a wind turbine harnesses the earth’s natural energy — wind — and uses it to power your appliances, electronics, lights and anything else that plugs into the wall. It’s safe, clean and best of all — free! In fact, if you have extra wind energy left over at the end of the month, you can sell it back to your local electric company for a profit!
The federal government is happy when consumers want to help harness their own energy, so it has passed several bills over the years to assist home and business owners in making the investment. An amendment to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, among other actions, provides a tax credit of 30 percent of the cost of purchase and installation for a wind turbine at your home, plus a second at another property if you have one. Your turbine need not be at your principal residence either — if you have a vacation home or any second property in a windy spot, you can still get the same credit.
The savings is a substantial one, so you must be certain to save all the documentation and receipts from the transaction. If your tax credit ends up being for more money than you owe in the next tax year, you can carry over the credit until the next tax year, but not past 2016. Consult your tax preparer or accountant to make sure your tax payment schedule is not too high so that you do not lose any of this valuable credit.
In order to get proper credit, you must file tax form 5695, for a residential energy-efficient property credit. It can be used for the cost of purchasing and installing wind turbines, solar cells, geothermal heat pumps and fuel cells. Be sure that your equipment and installation qualifies for credit before completing the purchase.
If you have at least a half-acre away from trees and buildings and a good, steady wind, a turbine might be right for you. How windy is windy enough? Generally, at least 10 miles per hour, but 12 is better. Intermountain Wind and Solar provides free wind assessments to ascertain if your property is windy enough to benefit from a turbine. If it is, they can provide details on how you can get your wind turbine and a welcome tax credit.