There is a lot of talk going on with roofs and green building initiatives. More roofs are seeing energy efficient, cool roof, blue roof and even fully functional green roofs being installed. These roofs greatly help the building reduce its carbon footprint and make for a more overall green conscious building, lowering electrical bills and creating happy healthy areas.

Environmentally conscious and green roofing practices may also have the added benefit of helping out your pocketbook during tax season. Today we want to discuss what kind of tax incentives exist for environmentally sound roofing materials and how you can get these benefits.

How Do I Qualify for Green Tax Credits?

The tax credit is aimed directly at homes that use energy efficient roofing materials, these can be anything from an extensive green roof to reflective Energy-Star materials. The credit may apply to your furnace, air conditioner or other power guzzling appliances but for the purpose of the article we are focusing on roofs.

Typical materials that qualify include reflective coatings on metal roofing or granules on your asphalt shingle that reflect solar energy. To qualify, your roof must meet Energy-Star standards but not all roofs installed with Energy-Star materials qualify for the tax credit.

You may be worried that it is too late to get your roof qualified for these tax credits but there’s good news, many parts of the Residential Energy Efficient Tax Credit can be applied retroactively to new materials dating back to January 1, 2011 as long as the materials came with a useful life warranty of at least 5 years.

How Much Can I Save with this Credit?

The Residential Energy Efficient Tax Credit will pay 10% of the material cost for energy efficient materials up to $500. The credit cannot be applied to the labor cost of the installation. Even if you’ve applied for the credit already you can reapply until your hit the $500 mark.

How Do I Get the Credit?

You need to turn in your federal tax return the year the install was completed along with IRS Form 5695. The credit may then be applied to your current year’s return or added to a future return.

We encourage homeowners who may qualify for the credit to get their money’s worth.