Generators and Tax Breaks: Getting Ready for the 2017 Hurricane Season
A recent news story published by the Palm Beach Post suggests that Florida could experience a severe Atlantic hurricane season this year. According to research conducted by the Climate Prediction Center at Colorado State University, the weather disturbance known as El Niño could make a comeback later in 2017, and it may strengthen hurricanes forming in the Caribbean.
In essence, El Niño results in warmer ocean waters, which in turn feed energy to the windy conditions of tropical storms. Although more accurate forecasts will not be available until the summer, there is a possibility that the Sunshine State may turn into the Hurricane State in 2017. What this means for homeowners is that they still have time to prepare for extreme weather conditions.
Installing a new standby generator for your Southwest Florida home is one of the smartest choices in terms of preparing for the hurricane season, particularly when climate experts are expecting a return of conditions similar to Hurricane Wilma In 2005. Once hurricanes enter the Gulf of Mexico, they tend to strengthen before landfall, thereby increasing their destructive potential. Once this happens, power outages lasting several days and even weeks can be expected.
The Generator Advantage in Florida
Florida Governor Rick Scott has explained that his office is working on tax rebates for portable generators in 2017; however, this tax relief measure would pale in comparison to the potential financial advantages when installing a standby generator.
Capital Tax Gain
The first benefit is related to the capital gains tax. If you intend to sell your existing home down the line, you may be able to get a tax break if you use the proceeds to purchase a new property soon after that. Naturally, if you have a standby generator installed when you sell your house, your home will have greater appeal, higher value, or both. Smart buyers tend to be very interested in Florida homes equipped with standby generator systems that can power their homes even when the rest of the block is left in darkness due to tropical storms. Be sure to check with your tax accountant about capital gains tax when you sell your home.
Energy Tax Credits
Even if your local electric utility does not offer energy tax credits or incentives for the use of generators at this time, this could change in the near future. TECO Energy in Tampa, for example, offers an interesting load management rebate for homeowners who install natural gas generators; this program could be expanded to other utilities.
Medical Expense Rebate
Another possible tax rebate that may be realized through the use of a standby generator is related to medical expenses. If you or someone in your household needs electricity to power medical equipment as directed by a physician, the cost of keeping the standby generator running during power outage periods could be itemized and deducted up to 10 percent of your annual gross income. Once again, you will have to check with your tax accountant about this item.
Finally, whenever the Governor’s Office declares a state of emergency, the possibility of getting reimbursed for the use of generators increases. All these potential advantages may sound great to homeowners, but the bottom line is that keeping the power on during emergencies is priceless on its own.
Please feel free to contact us if you have any queries:
All Phase Electric
2340 Bruner Lane Suit 100
Fort Myers, FL 33912