A grant is a sum of money given by a government or public body for a particular purpose. Very often, the purpose could be for the betterment or improvement of society and its citizens. Sometimes, it could be for a large-scale purpose meant for individual consumption by fulfilling certain conditions. If this seems too complicated, rest assured that it isn’t! Here’s some helpful information on how you can find grants which can help you run your home more economically.
While social grants are meant for improvements of large areas like a state or county that needs parks, a better water management/supply system, improved roads and other such public infrastructure, national or local governments do issue grants to their citizens on an individual basis. For example, grants are provided for the improvement of residential dwellings, specifically for some of the following home improvements:
- Purchase and installation of a solar water heating system installed in your residence, can get you a government sponsored discount/grant on the retail purchase price and also make you eligible for a monthly rebate in your monthly electricity bill. This applies for energy-saving appliances too! For example, replace all your standard incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps and you not only save on electricity consumed, but also get these bulbs/lamps at a reduced rate, thanks to a government grant.
- You can also seek a government grant if you use energy-saving material in the construction of your home. Ask your architect, building planner and your certified public accountant for more information.
- Do you live in your own house? Does it require renovation or home improvements? Will you be applying for a loan for this purpose? Good, because the government could possibly provide a reduced rate of interest for improving self-occupied homes and in some cases may also pay interest on the loan amount for a few months. In some countries, the home improvement tax credit is available even if you do the improvements with your own funds and not on borrowed money. In such cases, the government will waive-off a certain percentage of the tax amount due from you, taking into account the cost incurred on home improvements. The exemption has specific limits and covers labor, material and consulting charges for an architect and/or renovator.
- In some countries, grants are advanced on basis of the person’s age. Senior citizens can avail of assistance for home renovation from the local home improvement agencies run by the local government, county or are sponsored by the state governments.
Now, all of the information provided so far was related to home improvements and construction. Did you know, in some countries daily consumables such as bread, grains, sugar or other groceries, cooking oil, cooking gas, etc are sold by government agencies through a Public Distribution System, at rates that are 20-40 percent lesser compared to regular market rates? These programs are normally aimed at low-income groups or physically-challenged persons.
The point of this article is – there are various ways to run your home more economically than it appears. Just look for the grants and other schemes that you are eligible for and take full advantage of them, especially in these tough economic times.