Although the Bush tax cuts were extended for another two years, some tax incentives were not extended because they weren’t part of the Bush tax cuts. They fall into the one-time stimulus category.
Residential Energy Tax Credit
The Residential Energy Property Credit provides a 30% tax credit of up to $1,500 over a two-year period (2009 and 2010) if you make energy efficiency improvements to your home. These include insulation, exterior windows, heating, and air conditioning. The improvement must be placed into service by December 31, 2010.
This increased tax credit came to us in 2009. It’s not extended to 2011 or beyond.
Increased standard deduction for property tax
In 2008 and 2009, people not itemizing deductions were able to take an extra $500 or $1,000 in standard deduction for property tax paid. It hasn’t been extended to 2010 or beyond.
$250 one-time payment to Social Security recipients
In 2008 almost everybody, working or not, except higher income folks, got $300/person in Economic Stimulus Payment.
In 2009, those who work, except higher income folks, got a $400/$800 Making Work Pay tax credit. Most Social Security recipients and retirees from veterans and railroad retirement programs received a one-time $250 Economic Recovery Payment.
In 2010, most workers will still get the $400/$800 Making Work Pay tax credit but there won’t be a $250 for retirees. There’s a $250 rebate for retirees who hit the Medicare prescription drugs donut hole. That’s separate; no everybody will get it.
In 2011, Making Work Pay is replaced by a more generous (to most) 2% payroll tax holiday. No $250 for retirees either.