How much does my system cost
For residential systems solar electricity is about 40% - 70% utility costs over the 25 years of the solar equipment warranty depending on your solar exposure, site orientation and how you finance the system. Depending on the size of the photovoltaic (PV) system, prices range from about $15,000 - $50,000. The larger the system the better the cost/benefit ratio.
30% Federal tax credit
In effect through 2019, the solar tax benefit is a dollar for dollar credit that allows you to reduce your taxes by 30% of your system cost.*
For example, if your solar energy system was $30,000.
$30,000 X 30% = $9,000.
Let’s say in April you owe $10,000 in taxes.
$10,000 - $9,000 = $1,000.
Now you only owe $1,000 in taxes.
If you don’t owe that much taxes in one year you can roll it over to the next.
In the same example, let’s say you only owe $6,000 in taxes this year. You can apply $6,000 this year and the extra $3,000 next year.
* Consult your tax preparer to confirm these solar tax benefits.
The energy you produce, in most cases, will be less than 50% utility costs!
If you purchase your solar array with cash you are in effect buying down the cost of your electricity for the next 25 years (the manufacturer’s equipment warranty for the system). The modules should keep producing long after that, but you will generally need to replace the inverter at that time.
If you use a solar loan, the system will still pay for itself and provide electricity at about 50% - 80% utility cost. This is still incredible considering the project can be done with no money-out-of-pocket!
A free no-obligation satellite or site inspection will assess your property’s cost/benefit solar analysis so you know as accurately as possible your specific cost and how well your system will produce.
Net metering makes the utility company work for you – essentially becoming your battery. Excess power you make goes back onto the utility grid for credits. Build up lots of credits in the sunny, summer months to use in the winter months. The goal is to design a system that will not make more electricity in a year than what you consume in a year. Net metering will balance your production and use within the year.
Increasing Your Home Value
According to the Uniform Standard of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP), a cost appraisal for your home takes into consideration all the present and future assets of the property and its improvements. Therefore, the value of the property includes the value of the electricity and any WA state incentives that the system will earn in the future for anyone buying your property, which is significantly more than your original investment.
New solar loans are creatively designed; some specifically for the Federal Tax Credit. Solar loans have low interest (3.5 - 4.75%) and one of them you don't owe payments until you receive your Federal Tax Credit (9-18 months after the system is installed). With zero money down and premiums paid by tax benefits and the difference in your solar electricity to that of utility cost, you essentially receive a free system at some point if you apply all the system's earnings toward the loan.