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I know it's hard to think about, but April 15th is just around the corner. That means it's time to start thinking about your taxes. But here's some good news: If you made energy-efficient home improvements (such as a new qualified metal roof) any time in the year 2012, you may be in line for a tax credit of up to $500. This is all because of the reinstating of the 25C tax credit.

Certain tax incentives for energy-efficient home improvement projects expired on December 31, 2011. But, as part of the deal approved by Congress and President Obama to avoid the "fiscal cliff," that 25C tax credit was reinstated for 10% (up to $500) of all qualifying purchases made in 2012 and 2013. The $500 cap is for all projects combined.

If you invested in any of these qualifying projects in the past year, you're probably wondering about the next step to take to claim your tax credit. The Internal Revenue Service has yet to release the 2013 Form 5695 you'll need to send in. But that information should be available soon, so we'll keep you up to date on that and will post a link when we find it available. Your best bet now is to gather all your receipts and paperwork from the companies you did business with so you'll be ready to go once the form is available.

You can read the 25C tax credit bill here: