One of the criteria many individuals or businesses apply when considering feasibility of energy efficiency or renewable energy projects is the amount of time it will take to see a positive return on their investment. To help reduce the time it takes to get to a positive return-on-investment utility companies, state agencies, federal agencies, local governments and local non-profit organizations offer financial incentives. These incentives are offered in various forms including
- Rebate programs: A rebate program provides a financial refund after a purchase has been made and appropriate documentation has been submitted. Rebates are often used with energy efficiency applications. It is important to regularly check the Incentives page website or directly contact your local utility because rebate programs may be attached to a particular timeframe. For example American Electric Power has a rebate program of $15 for purchase of a qualifying energy star dehumidifier. The purchase must be made between May 1, 2011 and August 31, 2011.
- Tax Credit: The U.S. Department of Energy provides tax credit incentives that are subtracted from the federal taxes owed by a taxpayer. For a list of eligible projects, information on tax credit amount, and application process, contact U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy http://www1.eere.energy.gov/financing/consumers.html
- Grant: A grant is funding provide to an individual or business to cover a percentage of the cost of an energy project. In some cases funding is provided at the start of a projects but it is normally provided as certain stages of a project are completed or at the end of a project. Those who are interested should contact the Ohio Energy Resources Division, their local utility company, local government and local non-profit agencies interested in energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.
Loan: Low interest loans may be available for your energy project. The State of Ohio’s Energy Loan Fund is available for both energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. Manufacturers, small businesses, non-profits, and local governments are eligible to apply. Contact the Ohio Development Services Agency’s Office of Energy at 1-866-SAV-NRGY or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.