January 10 Federal tax credits for a variety of HVAC and other energy saving home improvements that were originally slated to expire at the end of 2010 were granted a last-minute reprieve by Congress in the final days of the year. However, the available tax credits are much reduced from last year's level.
As of January 1, the maximum allowed per homeowner was reduced from $1,500 to $500. The tax credits were also restructured so that the maximum available covers purchases between 2006 and 2011, not just for 2011. If the homeowner has already claimed $500 or more for improvements made in prior years, they are ineligible for further credits.
Eligible home heating and cooling equipment includes water heaters, boilers, furnaces, heat pumps and central air conditioners. Insulation windows and doors may also be eligible.