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Energy Efficient Home Improvement Credit: More Opportunity in 2023

Energy Efficient Home Improvement Credit: More Opportunity in 2023

As you approach the end of the year, if you are considering making home improvements, there may be a tax benefit for postponing those improvements until 2023.

Nonbusiness Energy Property Credit

For property placed in service before January 1, 2023, taxpayers are eligible to receive the Nonbusiness Energy Property Credit which is a credit equal to the sum of 1) 10% of the cost of qualified energy efficiency improvements and 2) the amount of residential energy property expenditures, up to specified dollar limits.

There is a lifetime limit of $500 for this credit so it’s possible that many taxpayers have already used up the full amount of this credit in a prior year(s).

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Energy Efficient Home Improvement Credit

However, starting in 2023, this credit changes to become the Energy Efficient Home Improvement Credit. This credit is an annual credit equal to 30% of the sum of:

  1. The amount paid or incurred for qualified energy efficiency improvements (defined below) installed during the tax year,
  2. The amount of residential energy property expenditures (defined below) paid or incurred during the tax year, and
  3. The amount paid or incurred during the tax year for home energy audits.

The Energy Efficient Home Improvement Credit is subject to the following limitations:

  • $1,200 per taxpayer per year
  • $600 for residential energy property expenditures, windows, and skylights
  • $250 for any exterior door ($500 total for all exterior doors)
  • $150 for a home energy audit

Notwithstanding these limitations, a $2,000 annual limit applies to the cost of specified heat pumps, heat pump water heaters, and biomass stoves and boilers.

(Download Video Transcript)

What is a Qualified Energy Efficiency Improvement?

A “qualified energy efficiency improvement” is an energy-efficient building envelope component that meets all of the following requirements:

  • The component is installed in or on a unit located in the U.S. that is owned and used as the principal residence of the taxpayer.
  • The original use of the component begins with the taxpayer (component was not previously used).
  • The component is reasonably expected to remain in use for at least five years.

The building envelope component is considered energy efficient if it is specifically and primarily designed to reduce the dwelling unit’s heat loss or gain when installed.

The component also needs to meet the prescriptive criteria for that component established by the most recent International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) standard in effect as of the beginning of the calendar year that is two years before the calendar year in which the component is placed in service.

Examples of potential qualifying components include:

  • Insulation material or systems
  • Exterior windows
  • Skylights
  • Doors

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What is a Residential Energy Property Expenditure?

“Residential energy property expenditures” are expenditures for qualified energy property tax that are:

  1. Installed on or in connection with a dwelling unit located in the U.S. and used as a residence by the taxpayer (does not have to be the principal residence) and
  2. Originally placed in service by the taxpayer

Qualified energy property includes any of the following items that meet the highest efficiency tier established by the Consortium for Energy Efficiency in effect as of the beginning of the calendar year in which the property is placed in service:

  • An electric or natural gas heat pump water heater
  • A central air conditioner
  • A natural gas, propane, or oil water heater
  • A natural gas, propane, or oil furnace or hot water boiler
  • A biomass stove or boiler that has a thermal efficiency rating of at least 75%
  • An oil furnace or hot water boiler that (if placed in service between 12/31/22 and 1/1/27) meets the 2021 energy star efficiency criteria

The term “residential energy property expenditures” includes expenditures for labor costs properly allocable to the onsite preparation, assembly, or original installation of the property.

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Some other good news about the Energy Efficient Home Improvement Credit is there is no phase out for higher-income taxpayers, and a taxpayer who qualifies for both the energy efficient home improvement credit and the residential energy efficient property credit can claim both.

If you have questions on this credit, let us know. We are here to help.

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Biz Tip Topic Expert: Molly Taylor - CPA, MT

Molly Taylor - CPA, MT

Molly is a Manager with SVA and specializes in individual and corporate taxation with an emphasis on federal and multistate tax issues. In addition to tax preparation services, she works closely with clients throughout the year advising on tax planning opportunities and strategies.

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