March 29, 2018

Virginia residents can save money on their home’s energy efficient improvements by taking advantage of (1) tax incentives, (2) programs from utility companies, (3) green mortgages, and (4) the Weatherization Assistance Program. As programs change quickly, Virginia residents should use the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency to view a complete list of incentives and rebates in their area. Additionally, residents can check their city, county, state, and utility websites for a list of energy efficient programs.

Tax incentives

Virginia Sales Tax Holiday

The first Friday through Sunday in August are tax-free days for energy and water conservation products. During this time, consumers will not be taxed on appliances and fixtures up to $2,500 that are certified ENERGY STAR and WaterSense. Some of these products include washing machines, faucets, toilets, and more. To find out what other products apply for the sales tax holiday, visit Virginia's Sales Tax Holiday website.

Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit

Residents who install solar power or ENERGY STAR certified solar water heaters can take advantage of a 30% federal tax credit. This tax credit will stay at 30% through 2019. After that, it will be reduced. Residents will need to complete an IRS Form 5965.

Some residents in Virginia can qualify for Energy Efficient Buildings Tax Exemption and Virginia Property Tax Exemption For Solar Equipment. Check the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency for the specific regions in Virginia that can take advantage of these exemptions.

Programs from utility companies

Several utilities in Virginia offer incentives and rebate programs to residents. For example, residents using Charlottesville Gas can take advantage of programs designed to reduce heating costs. These programs include rebates for installing a programmable thermostat, tankless water heater, and energy-saving hot water heater.

Additionally, residents using Dominion Power may (depending on age and income) be able to take advantage of programs designed to save electricity, including Smart Cooling Rewards (i.e., $40 credit for cycling air conditioning on days that are considered high use) and Income and Age Qualifying Home Improvement (i.e., free energy assessment and energy retrofits).

Residents should check their utility companies’ websites to find these incentives and rebates.

Green mortgages

Residents wanting to make their homes more energy efficient can borrow money to help pay for energy efficient upgrades to a current home or to a home that the resident plans on purchasing. Upgrades can include items like windows, tankless water heaters, HVAC systems, insulation, and more. For more information, visit their website.

Weatherization Assistance Programs

Elderly and residents with low incomes can apply for funds for energy efficient home repairs designed to save energy and reduce heating and cooling costs. Find out more at Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development.

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LEAP, Guest Poster

The mission of the Local Energy Alliance Program (LEAP) in Virginia is to lead the effort in our local communities to implement energy efficient and renewable technologies in buildings that promote cost savings, energy self-reliance, local economic development, and that help to mitigate climate change.