Sunday, June 28, 2009

Get more for your money when purchasing replacement windows

(ARA) - Energy efficiency has gained national importance and window replacement is recognized as one pathway to aid in energy independence and the reduction of harmful global emissions.

Choosing replacement windows with energy-saving benefits is simple and the federal government also made it less expensive for homeowners with the signing of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

The bill includes the opportunity for homeowners to claim a tax credit of 30 percent of the cost of eligible energy-efficient products to a maximum of $1,500 per household for 2009 and 2010 combined when used for remodeling and replacement. According to the IRS, a tax credit is a dollar-for-dollar reduction in your tax liability and can be deducted directly from your taxes owed.

While energy efficient replacement windows are included in this tax credit, not all replacement windows will qualify. Paul Delahunt, president of Renewal by Andersen, says, given the new tax credit, now is the best time to replace your leaky, worn-out windows. But he also cautions homeowners to do their homework to make sure the windows they purchase will qualify.

To qualify, windows must provide high levels of energy efficiency in two categories: reduced heat loss and reduced heat gain. The measurement for heat loss is called U-Factor and the measurement for heat gain is called Solar Heat Gain Coefficient, or SHGC. To meet the performance requirements, the window or door must have both a U-Factor and SHGC rating equal to or less than 0.30 in all climate zones in the U.S.

When comparing windows for energy performance -- and the 2009/2010 tax credit -- be sure to check the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) label that is displayed on the product. This label displays the U-Factor and SHGC ratings for the window or patio door. If the product does not have this label, then the unit does not have a certified NFRC value.

Qualifying replacement windows must be purchased and installed in a primary residence between January 1, 2009 and December 31, 2010. While quality installation is a critical component of any successful window replacement project, installation costs are not included in the 2009/2010 tax credit. Your sales receipt should break out qualifying product costs separately.

In addition to your sales receipt, you will also need to save the NFRC label from each window or the Manufacturer’s Certification Statement with your tax documents.

Renewal by Andersen makes it easy for homeowners to take advantage of the new federal tax credit with its extensive selection of windows and patio doors with glass packages that meet or exceed the performance criteria to be eligible for the credit.

In fact, Delahunt says, virtually all Renewal by Andersen windows with High-Performance Low-E4 SmartSun glass are eligible for the tax credit. These same windows with SmartSun glass are up to 47 percent more energy efficient in winter and up to 70 percent more energy efficient in summer compared to ordinary dual pane glass -- making a big impact on reducing your energy bills.

Courtesy of ARAcontent

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