Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Electric Cars More Affordable with Tax Credits

photo used with permission from morgueFile Free License

Sometimes you just can’t afford to be as green as you want to be.

While there are countless inexpensive and sometimes even money saving ways to eliminate waste and reduce dependence on non renewable energy resources like fossil fuels, some proven ways involve a purchase that can’t be worked into the average green consumer’s budget.

An example is the electric car.

A new compact sedan that runs on fossil fuel can be purchased at an average starting price of approximately $17,000.

Compare this to an electric powered vehicle such as the Nissan Leaf with a price tag of over $32,000. That’s often just too high a price to pay no matter how committed you are to environmental issues like the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.

But things might be changing now that more people are recognizing that our dependence on foreign oil is a national security risk.

Federal tax credits and state tax incentives are becoming available for those shopping for an environmentally friendly vehicle. Read more about Tax Incentives for Electric Cars

Tax Incentives For Electric Cars

photo used with permission from morgueFile Free License
Federal tax credits and state tax incentives are becoming available for those shopping for an environmentally friendly vehicle.
A $7,500 federal tax credit is available for purchases of a plug in car.
California residents can get up to a $5,000 tax rebate plus access to carpool lanes when they buy a zero emissions vehicle. Some local areas in California offer free parking for these vehicles as well as additional incentives and tax breaks.
For Hawaii residents, 20% of the purchase price of the vehicle can be claimed by rebate, up to $4,500. Additional rebates are available if a charging station is also purchased.
Residents of Colorado can get a tax credit on the purchase of a charger of up to 20% and the qualifying vehicle offers a credit up to $6,000.
Carpool lane access is offered to Georgia residents who purchase electric vehicles, as well as up to $5,000 income tax credit with an additional charging equipment purchase tax credit of 10%.
So, before you decide that you can’t afford an electric car to accompany your environmentally responsible lifestyle, check out the tax incentives in your area.
Be aware that all plug in cars do not qualify as a zero emissions vehicle, but companies are working on engineering of vehicles to qualify them for the benefits now being offered.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Grocery Budget, Time Management and the Environment

photo used with permission from morgueFile Free License

How far is the drive to your favorite grocery store, and how often do you go there? 

Do you usually stop on your way home from work or do you schedule a special trip because the chore of grocery shopping with the additional labor of lugging all the groceries into the house and then putting them all away is so exhausting?

You didn’t know this was going to be a pop test, did you? But as long as I have you answering questions, here are a few more. The answers may let you find ways to save money on your grocery budget as well as cut down on your gas usage.

And isn’t that the whole point? Saving money while being environmentally responsible?

How would you answer these questions:

  • How often do you make a special trip to the convenience store to pick up just one or two items? 
    • How often do you leave the convenience store with just those one or two items?
  • Do you plan your driving route when you’re running errands to find the best route, or do you drive back and forth from one end of town to the other as you think of new things you should attend to?
  • Do you make a list of items you need before you go shopping?
    • Do you remember to take the list with you and refer to it?
  • How often do you find yourself at the store and realize you’ve left your earth friendly reusable bags at home?
  • Do you stock up on staple items for the home when they are on sale, or do you run to the store each time you run out of peanut butter, salt, flour, sugar and ketchup?

By now you should have a pretty good idea of how you usually deal with grocery shopping and running errands. You should also be able to see a pattern emerging on how your habits have a big impact on your household budget and the environment.

With just a little tweaking, you can change your habits and save time, money and the environment.