Is Going Solar Worth It Despite The High Cost
Yes, solar panels are expensive. With a typical 6 kW system costing an average of $14,940, they are a home improvement that requires a significant financial investment.
But in addition to offering energy independence and environmentally-friendly renewable energy, solar panels also have the potential to save you thousands of dollars over the life of the panels.
Furthermore, the high upfront costs needn’t be an obstacle: most solar companies work with loan providers to offer many financing options.
If you haven’t already, start by getting an solar cost and savings estimate to see if the math is in your favor.
How much can you save with solar?
Solar Costs Over Time Continue To Fall
A solar panel system hasnt always been $2.76/W. As recently as five years ago, the cost of solar panels was almost 20 percent higher than it is now:
Prices will likely continue to fall even more in the future. The solar industry is still young, and theres plenty of innovation still to come. As manufacturing and installation processes mature and become even more efficient, solar shoppers will hopefully start to see some of those cost savings impacting their sticker price for solar.
Questions To Ask About The Cost Of Solar Panels And Installing Solar Panels
There are a number of different questions that you should ask about the cost of solar panels prior to making a purchase decision.
These questions will help you to save the most money possible when acquiring a new array of solar panels.
- Do you offer any financing options?
- How much am I expected to save each year?
- What will be my monthly electric bill costs?
- How many solar installations have you done before?
- Is there room to expand my system if my energy requirements increase?
- What warranties do you provide?
- Are there any references that I can contact about your work?
- Do you offer a performance guarantee?
- Can you assist me in claiming rebates and incentives so that I can make further savings?
- What certifications and licensing do you have?
- Will my roof need to be strengthened?
These questions will all help you to determine whether you are using the right solar installer or not and whether there may be any additional savings that you can make or additional financial outlays that you need to consider prior to getting started with your solar installation.
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Average Cost Of Solar Panels By Number Of Bedrooms
The number of bedrooms a home has is not a good indicator of its energy needs. But it can be a good gauge of the homes general size. If you are unsure of your size and want a very general understanding of what the costs would be to install solar energy, this can be useful information.
But every household has very different needs. The best way to determine your energy needs is to look at your electric bill for the month. Then decide how much you want to reduce your dependency on the grid to get a more accurate sense of the size and cost of your system.
|Number of Rooms|
|$15,000 – $50,000|
Calculating Your Solar Payback Period
Now that you know the factors that contribute to combined costs and combined benefits of installing solar panels, you can now calculate your solar panel payback period.
To do this, follow these steps:
1. Determine Combined Costs
- Subtract the value of all incentives and rebates you quality for from the gross cost of your solar panel system.
2. Determine annual benefits
- Add up all the annual financial benefits you could receive, such as avoided electricity costs.
3. Divide your combined costs by your annual financial benefits
- This number represents the number of years it will take to achieve your solar panel payback period. After this time, you have surpassed the break even point and can now reap the full financial benefits of your solar panel system.
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What Do Solar Panels Cost And Are They Worth It
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The rising cost of electricity from traditional sources makes solar installation seem like a no-brainer for many homeowners.
But the true cost of solar panels, and whether they’ll help you save money, depends on a few key factors. On average, installation and the system together can run between $15,000 and $25,000, according to the Center for Sustainable Energy.
Location largely affects electricity rates. The national average is about 13 cents per kilowatt-hour, according to year-to-date 2021 data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
Before you make the leap, learn how your electric bill, location and incentives can impact your wallet over time. Here are six steps to take to determine whether youll save more than you spend on solar panels.
» MORE: Find ways to save with NerdWallet
How Much Money Can You Save With Tax Credits
Weve gone into greater detail about tax credits in other articles on our website, so we wont go into great detail about tax credits here.
However, you can generally expect to save about 30% off your solar panel installation costs with tax credits. Always check tax credits with your government, state, or jurisdiction. In some cases, youre better off waiting a few months to install solar panels because a tax credit is coming next year. In other regions, governments are ending tax credit incentive programs so you should rush to get your solar panels completed before the incentive program ends.
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Benefits Of Using Solar Panels For Commercial Buildings
Solar panels can reduce your energy costs by harvesting solar energy for your business or building throughout the lifetime of your solar panels, which can be twenty years or more. With a solar array, you can avoid spikes in demand and price for energy. The property will also be insulated from power outages or disruptions that can affect grid users. Solar power usage can entice new tenants to your building or raise the profile of your own business, by using the eco-friendly energy from your building as a selling point.
Leased Vs Owned Equipment
Some solar panel installation companies will sell you the solar equipment so you can own it outright and immediately start keeping all the money you save on utility bills for yourself. Other companies make starting your journey to using green, renewable energy affordable by leasing the solar set-up to homeowners. This helps you save money upfront and employ your utility savings to help you eventually pay off the equipment.
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Is There A Tax Credit For Solar Panels In 2022
Yes, there is a tax credit for solar panels in 2022. Owners of both residential and commercial solar systems are eligible for a 26% federal tax credit. This means you can get a tax credit of $260 for every $1,000 invested in a solar power system. Georgia does not have a state tax credit, but the 26% federal tax credit is available everywhere in the U.S.
Solar Panel System Cost
You can expect your solar panel installation to cost anywhere between $15,000 to $25,000. However, this doesnt give you an accurate picture of the other factors that play a role in the true costs of going solar.
Over time, solar panel systems can pay for themselves. In other cases, you may sink large costs into installing a solar panel with no returns. Consider how these factors will affect the installation of a solar panel on your home.
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What Do You Need Before Installing A Solar Panel
There are a few boxes that will need to be checked off before you can install solar panels, some of which may carry additional fees. These areas must all be addressed prior to solar panel installation.
- Residents association approval In some areas, the homeowners association must give you permission to proceed with the installation. You may need to become a member of the residents association yourself in order to gain approval, which may carry a small membership fee.
- Respect the established customs of neighborliness and agreement If your solar system is in breach of these rules, you may face issues that then lead to its removal or alteration. This could cost you anywhere from hundreds to thousands of dollars.
- Electrical and building permits There are certain changes to existing buildings that require approval by your local government. You must obtain permits before any work can commence. This is likely to cost in the region of several hundred dollars.
- Certified solar system units Since the community will most likely connect to the local power source, you should use certified solar system types to ensure that your panels will not negatively affect the local power grid or cause the power lines to malfunction during installation. If you opt to use a different type of unit, this could lead to you having to replace all of your components or, even worse, completely removing your solar system. This could cost thousands of dollars in expenses.
How Can You Lower The Cost Of Your Solar Power Installation
Even with soft costs and extra tariffs, consumers can find ways to reduce the final bill of their residential solar power system.
- Use the federal tax credit: Take advantage of the federal investment tax credit for new installations to receive up to 26% of your investment back. This incentive is available to anyone who pays taxes.
- Search for state and utility incentives: There are many incentives available at the state, utility and local level, some of which are worth thousands of dollars.
Learn more about incentives and rebates on our solar incentives page.
See how much you can save with solar incentives and rebates
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Read The User Manual And Check Your Components
Whether its your first time installing RV solar panels or not, you should always begin by checking the instruction manual for each piece of equipment you buy. You should also verify if all the components are complete and come with no defects.
RV solar panels or kits usually come with a list of components included and directions on how to combine everything safely. This is essential since there are times when mounting processes are specific to the type of panel you purchase .
Soft Cost Reduction Solutions
The Department of Energys Solar Energy Technology Office launched an initiative called Sunshot in 2011. The goal is to put solar energy financially on par with other energy sources by the year 2020.
Various permitting, entities and laws throughout various jurisdictions can slow down the process of solar installation and raise costs. Through systematizing and unifying solar, SETO is working to cut red tape and prices.
They also fund research for new ways to streamline solar company operations. Better software and processes to help solar companies reach new customers and run more smoothly helps tame soft costs. Through these efforts, the savings can be passed on to solar customers.
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Explore The Benefits Of Solar Panel Systems
Installing solar panels on your home is the best way to save money in the long term while helping the environment.
With over 20 years of experience, the Simply Solar team is known for its high-quality service, installing solar panels that will last for years to come.
Get in touch for a free estimate. Our in-house team is excited to work with you!
How Many Batteries Will The Rv Solar Roof Need
Running your appliances without a solar energy source is just a matter of answering the question of how many batteries your RV solar roof will need.
Batteries are simple. You produce solar energy during the day, then you store them for later use using batteries, or as the fancy people call it: energy storage systems . Now that is an excellent way to sound cool in front of your family and friends during thanksgiving.
Lets backtrack a bit and understand the problems at hand that require ESS solutions.
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Adjustable Solar Panel Mount
An adjustable or tilt solar panel mount costs between $200 and $500. This is the mount type you need for a flat roof. It is mostly used in commercial settings, but if you have a residential home with a flat roof, you could also use this method. The rack is adjustable, so you can precisely catch the perfect angle of the sun. Since not all flat roofs are completely flat, the adjustable tilting feature allows you to get a better fit no matter what your slope is. Most have a range where they are adjustable and where they cannot go past.
Solar Panels Cost Much Less Than They Used To
According to the Solar Energy Industries Association , the median installed price for solar energy systems fell 70% in the last decade .
If we shorten the time frame and look at just the last 5 years, we see that solar panel costs dropped 37%.
So a typical 6 kW residential solar panel system that costs an average of $15,840 in 2021 would have cost $25,143 in 2015, and a whopping $52,800 in 2010.Cost for typical solar panel installation over time
Our own analysis of solar panel costs, based on thousands of quotes received by consumers, finds:
- The decrease in price has significantly changed residential solars cost-benefit equation
- In most states the solar payback period is now between 4-9 years
- Our forecasts also show that further price drops are unlikely as the solar industry matures
See live solar prices and the best solar offers for your home
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Solar Thermal Panels Vs Photovoltaic Panels
You may find that in addition to the many other choices you have when it comes to solar, you also have two panel types to choose from. Solar thermal and photovoltaic are the two main types of solar energy. For most homes, photovoltaic is the most common type, while solar thermal is typically used for larger commercial settings.
Solar thermal panels use heat, which it then converts to energy. This means it could store the heat from the day and then produce energy at night. Photovoltaic cells produce electricity from light. This is the most common cell because they can be installed with or without batteries, and they do not overheat. Some thermal panels lose efficiency as they heat up, making them not as good a choice for mounting on top of a home or in very sunny climates. Both have a similar cost per watt, depending on the manufacturer.
Thats Great But What About The Solar Panel Installation Cost For My Home
If you are curious about how much solar panels cost, it generally depends on a few factors. These include:
- The size of your home solar system
- Whether you buy or lease
- Whether you qualify for federal, state, or local incentives and Whether you install a battery
When installing solar on your homes roof, there are several factors to consider.
Electricity needs How much energy you currently consume will directly relate to how big of a solar system you need and how many panels you need to support your homes energy needs.
Where you live How much sun exposure your homes roof gets will directly correlate to how much energy your solar system can produce and will impact how many panels you need for your home. More sun means more energy produced and a greater potential to save with solar.
Choice of solar panels – Better panels produce more energy more efficiently. The efficiency of the solar panels directly impacts the savings you can experience.
Roof angle – In solar panel installation, it is important to angle the solar panels so they can get maximum exposure to the sun. This is not a problem when the roof is angled, but it can be if the roof is flat. Houses with irregular rooflines, skylights, and challenging angles can make installation more complicated.
Purchasing options and incentives The payment option you choose will affect your costs, as well as your eligibility for incentives.
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Factors In Calculating Cost Of Solar Panels
Calculating the cost of solar panels involves several factors. Prices can differ due to location and how much energy is needed to power heating and cooling units. Whether solar panels are installed on the roof or the ground will also change the installation and labor costs. Additional factors include permit and inspection fees, on-grid vs. off-grid systems, the size and type of solar panel system, equipment, and operational costs.
Buying Solar Panels Outright With Cash
- If you have the capital available and you wish to invest you can attain a reasonable investment with the Feed-in Tariff. You can save a reasonable amount of money on your bills over 20 years and insulate yourself from future energy price increases. You will be looking at income and savings of roughly £266 per year from a 4Kw system.
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