Go Solar Now or Wait?
Should I Go Solar Now or Wait?
Are you asking yourself if you should go solar? Are you waiting to see what happens with rebates or if there will be a perfect deal for you?
According to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), installing solar energy in a home cost 1.6 percent less than in 2016 than 2017, if this trend continues, the cost to install could keep decreasing.
But by waiting you miss out.
The Opportunity Cost of Waiting for Solar
The typical U.S. home spends about $1,200 a year on electricity. If you buy a system that meets 100% of your electricity needs, you can eliminate your electricity costs and simply pay for your system, which can be financed over the course of 20 years - at a fixed rate. The following year, when utility bill pricing goes up, your savings will continue to grow, and so on, for the 25 to 35 years that your system is operational. For every year that you don’t buy solar, you lose out on all those electricity bill savings.
Electricity prices rose by as much as three percent in 2015, and depending on where you live, could increase by another two or three percent in 2019. With no fixed rate, electricity is not the safe bet.
One reason to go solar now: increased electricity prices cut into your savings!
Less Financial Incentives As Solar Becomes More Popular
While there are significant rebates, tax credits, and other incentives currently in place to encourage homeowners to go solar, incentives programs usually get phased out as solar becomes more popular.
The current Federal renewable energy tax credit is 30% through 2019 – but after that, it will be phased out for residential systems. Some state and local governments offer similar programs, but those too, will be reduced over time.
Here are a few examples:
Texas used to have rebates up to $15,000. But thanks to the popularity of solar, those rebate programs have been eliminated or set to a flat fee of $2,500.
In New York, the Megawatt Block Incentive Structure gives solar energy system owners a rebate based on the size of their system (in dollars per watt). As more property owners install solar, the value of the rebate is reduced. The highest incentives available through the program are $1/watt, but will eventually be reduced to $0.15/watt as adoption increases.
Massachusetts had a solar rebate program that initially gave rebates in the $9,000 range. Now, the rebate program has ended and homeowners are only eligible for a tax credit, which is capped at $1,000.
The time for Solar Energy Savings is now!