When reading the recent news from the US, about tax credit being offered on qualifying energy efficient windows, I couldn’t help but wonder why the UK is behind yet again. We have been fighting hard for reduced VAT on energy efficient windows in the UK for several years now, and while we have made progress, we have not achieved our goal. In the US the $789 billion stimulus bill signed by President Obama includes a substantial tax credit for energy-efficient home improvements including qualifying energy-efficient windows. The credit, in the case of an individual, allows a 30 percent credit for the sum of:
1. The amount paid or incurred by the taxpayer during such taxable year for qualified energy efficiency improvements, and
2. The amount of the residential energy property expenditures paid or incurred by the taxpayer during such taxable year.
Although we haven’t yet been given tax relief on energy efficient windows in the UK, we are moving in the right direction. The Heat and Energy Saving Strategy has given installers another reason to sell replacement windows. The Strategy published by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) and the Department for Communities and Local Government (CLG), sets out the Government’s vision to 2020 and beyond and asks for opinions on the range of policies that can help decarbonise our homes and businesses. Household emissions alone will be cut by one third by 2020 and the goal is for all homes and buildings to be approaching zero carbon by 2050. How does this affect Installers? According to Philip Sellwod, Chief Executive of the Energy Saving Trust, “If we throw everything at our existing housing stock – based on today’s technologies only – we could reduce household carbon emission by 50%.” Installers can use these Government targets and the fact the technology exists now to be able to meet these targets, to create an opportunity to demonstrate to the homeowner their knowledge of the green issues as well as the fact they can offer the solution with their energy rated offering. Edgetech’s Super Spacer® is one of the existing technologies that have been helping to reduce heat loss from buildings for over 20 years and continues to help installers make the most of the sales opportunities arising from Government targets.
Managing Director Edgetech UK and Europe