Green is good. So when you're sprucing up your home or doing your taxes, it pays to think about how to save more of the green stuff. The planet will thank you. And so will your bottomline.
It's Cool To Plant Trees.
Dig this. The simple act of planting a tree can create energy savings. It can provide wind protection, shade and cool air - while adding beauty, privacy and wildlife to the landscape.
Deciduous trees (trees that lose their leaves each fall) save energy in the summer by shading homes, patios, sidewalks, driveways and entire neighborhoods. When planted on the east, west and northwest sides of a house, deciduous trees will reduce summer air conditioning costs by up to 35%. Why not consider planting one near your air conditioner? It will help it run more efficiently.
Small deciduous trees and shrubs - especially ones with low, dense branches - make effective wind barriers. And both large and small evergreen trees and shrubs will save energy by slowing blustery winter winds.
It pays to plant more green in your landscape. For ideas, stop by your local nursery or visit arborday.org.
Home Green Home.
Some home improvements will not only increase the value of your home, they'll actually help pay for themselves. By choosing energy-efficient upgrades, you can qualify for up to $500 in federal tax credits.
Invest in your home - and save money and protect the environment - at the same time.
Available Tax Credits:
Adding adequate insulation is one of the most cost-effective home improvements you can make. Tax Credit Amount: 10% of the cost up to $500
- Central Air Conditioning
Air conditioners recognized as ENERGY STAR Most Efficient 2016 meet the requirements for this tax credit. Tax Credit Amount: $300
This tax credit is for ENERGY STAR certified metal and asphalt roofs with pigmented coatings or cooling granules designed to reduce heat gain. When figuring a roof credit, don't count labor costs. Tax Credit Amount: 10% of the cost up to $500
- Water Heaters (Non Solar)
ENERGY STAR certified water heaters and ENERGY STAR certified gas water heaters meet the requirement for this tax credit. Tax Credit Amount: $300
- Windows, Doors & Skylights
Get a tax credit for windows, doors and skylights that save energy, improve comfort and help protect the environment. Tax Credit Amount: 10% of cost (not including installation costs) up to $200 for windows and skylights; up to $500 for doors.
- To learn more about qualifying products, visit energystar.gov.
Save Energy. Save Money. File Online With H&R Block.
H&R Block can't help you plant more trees. But they can handle those energy tax credits and help you make the most of your tax return.
So this tax season, save money by filing your return online while still getting your maximum refund. Not only can online tax preparation be super user-friendly, it can be free.
If you have a simple tax return you can explore online tax filing with the H&R Block Free Edition. We make completion of your tax return easy, guiding you through a step-by-step Q&A. The Free Edition also includes free E-file and our 100% accuracy guarantee.