Although the U. S. Government didn’t use precisely those words, one section of the Economic Recovery Act (“American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009”) says almost the same thing. You already know that the government is trying to encourage us to become less dependent on foreign oil and to become energy efficient to protect the environment and reduce our need for foreign oil. There is a great deal in the Economic Recovery Act directing funds to various renewable energy and energy conservation projects. 
To help homeowners pay for energy efficient remodeling, the government is offering tax credits in various amounts depending on the cost of the remodel, the type of energy-saving technology involved, and how much it will reduce dependence on petroleum. You need to understand that what is being offered is not just another income tax deduction to be entered on Schedule A – if you itemize your deductions, nor is it a deduction that will be swallowed up when you subtract the stated percentage of your income. This is a tax credit. After you calculate the amount of income tax you are required to pay, then  you deduct the entire amount of the credit from the amount of income tax you are required to pay. The bottom line is that if you are due a refund, you will be getting up to $1,500 more because of the credit; if you owe, the amount you owe will be reduced by up to $1,500. 
Another reason for you to remodel is that the economy is in trouble. Home builders, contractors, sub-contractors and construction and remodeling workers have been suffering as much as other kinds of workers. Because everyone needs to work, a surprising number of construction and remodeling workers are discounting their rates by ten percent (or even more) to keep working and keep paying their crews. 
Yet another reason for you to remodel now is that the prices of many construction materials have declined in recent months. For example, if you are planning to pave a driveway (although it will not qualify for a Federal tax credit) you can expect to pay 14.4% less for the asphalt. If you are planning for a new roof and you choose energy efficiency rated asphalt shingles, you can expect to save in several ways: (1) you will pay 3.2% less for the asphalt shingles; (2) you might be able to get a deal on the installation, and (3) the roof will qualify for a tax credit of 30% of the cost of the new roof up to a maximum of $1,500. Lumber prices are also at a thirteen year low, having dropped 16.6% since December of 2003.
 You probably recall that a tax incentive was offered a few years ago for energy efficiency upgrades. That program offered a 10% tax credit, up to a maximum of $500 per tax year. The new program is triple that! You can claim a credit of 30% for all qualifying upgrades up to a total of $1,500 per year. The 30% credit with a $1,500 cap applies to all “energy-efficiency” remodels. But if you switch to a source of renewable energy to heat and cool your home and to heat water, you can claim a credit of 30% with no limit on the amount of the credit.
There is even more good news! Most states offer some type of energy efficiency incentives, whether low-interest loans, rebates, sales tax holidays or tax credits. And a very large number of power companies (gas, oil and electric) are offering rebates, rate discounts, low-interest financing, power buy-back programs and more. 
If you have been thinking about making your house more energy efficient, now is the time to do it. Prices have not been this low in many years. The incentives are powerful, and the combination of federal, state, local government and utility company incentives can reduce the cost of some projects by as much as 70%. Then you can start to calculate the amount you save year-by-year on electric bills. To learn about the details of the federal program visit www.EnergyStar.gov; to learn about programs available from your state or local government and from local utility companies, visit www.Dsireusa.org.