Monday, March 19, 2012

Don't miss out on solar tax credits for solar hot water and solar electric!

Did you recently purchase solar for your home? You may have federal tax credits available to you! If you haven't yet made your purchase, you can still qualify for a 30 percent credit if you act before the end of 2016.

The residential energy credit for installing solar water heating and electric equipment is worth 30 percent of the cost of the system placed in service through Dec. 31, 2016. There is no limit on the cost, or on your income, to qualify for this credit, taken in Part II of IRS Form 5695.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, to qualify for the 30 percent credit on either a solar water heating or a photovoltaic (solar electric) installation, the system must be placed in service by Dec. 31, 2016, must be available on your principal or second home (within the United States) and can be installed on either new or existing homes.

To qualify for credit on a solar water heating installation, at least half of the energy generated by the system must come from the sun and the system must be certified by the Solar Rating and Certification Corporation (SRCC). The water must be used in the dwelling and the credit is not available for expenses for swimming pools or hot tubs. The tax credit is only available for the solar water heating system, not the entire water heating system of the household.

To qualify for a credit on a photovoltaic (solar electric) installation, the system must provide electricity for the residence and must meet applicable fire and electric code requirements.

Generally, you can include labor costs when figuring the credit and you can carry forward any unused portion of this credit. These are federal credits and they can be combined with other state, local and utility incentives. To determine if you are eligible for other incentives, visit the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency.

As you prepare to file for your tax credit, save or make copies of your receipts and be sure you have the Manufacturer Certification Statement for your records.

UMA Solar offers solar hot water and solar electric systems that are eligible for these federal tax credits through its nationwide network of dealers. For more information about our solar hot water systems visit and for details on our solar electric systems, visit