Green Idea: Use Your Tax Rebate to Boost the Green Economy

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

April 15 is almost here, and for many of us, that means that we’ll finally get our taxes filed. We’ll also soon be getting a sizeable “rebate” check in the mail — up to $600. Why not spend that money on something green? (And it doesn’t have to be all about consumption…)

There are lots of small, local businesses that are working hard to make green a way of life. Three that come to mine include Olio United in Portland, Ecohome Improvement in Berkeley, and Sprout Home in Chicago.

The smartest investment is to buy something that will save you money over the long term: $600 makes a significant down payment on an on-demand hot water heater, or it would pay for a houseful of professionally installed weatherstripping, or a new dual-flush toilet.

This just might be a way around the problem, discussed a few months back, of whether to refer to those $600 checks as a rebate or a bonus: spend it on conservation and you make it both.

image by alitaylor via