If you pay state income taxes, Iowa’s new tax credit for solar energy means there’s never been a better time to install solar panels on your home or business. The Iowa legislature created a new state tax incentive for solar energy technologies in the final weeks of the 2012 session. Governor Branstad signed the legislation on May 25 and now the Iowa Department of Revenue has issued guidance and an application form to apply for the credit.
Here’s how it works:
- Eligible technologies include solar photovoltaics (also called solar PV, these are the panels that generate electricity) and solar thermal systems, which are often used to provide hot water.
- The Iowa guidelines match guidelines for existing federal tax credits for solar energy installations. If you qualify for the federal tax credits, you should be able to claim the Iowa tax credit.
- And here’s the best part: When the state and federal tax credits are combined, the credits can offset close to 50% of the upfront cost of your new solar energy system.
With solar prices coming down and the availability of both the state and federal tax credits for the next few years, now is a great time to go solar. Solar PV generates electricity on-site to offset or even eliminate your electric bill. Solar PV is a great fit in Iowa, as our demand for electricity is often highest during hot summer days – just when solar PV is generating a lot of electricity. Solar thermal technologies can heat your water as well as indoor spaces. Both technologies reduce Iowa’s use of fossil fuels like coal and natural gas while also creating jobs in the local economy.
However, there is a limited quantity of Iowa credits each year and they are issued on a first-come, first-serve basis. If you are interested in going solar, right now is the time to act.
For more information:
- To learn more about the state tax credit, please see the Department of Revenue website here: http://www.iowa.gov/tax/business/solarcredits.html
- To learn more about solar technologies, please see the Iowa Energy Center’s website here: http://www.iowaenergycenter.org/renewable-energy/solar/
- To find out about businesses in Iowa that install solar technologies, start your search here: http://www.iowaseta.org/directory.asp