Tuesday, March 30th, 2021

The rising cost of electricity from traditional sources makes solar installation seem like a no-brainer for many homeowners. Solar panels are a great investment that can provide you with renewable solar energy for the next 25 years or more. However, there are some things to consider before installing a solar system at home.

Low Maintenance, Not No Maintenance

Solar systems are pretty low maintenance, but they do need some maintenance regularly. Solar panels generally require very little maintenance to function. The only thing they need is a periodic light cleaning to make sure dirt, leaves, and other debris aren’t obstructing the sun’s rays. The only time you may need more extensive maintenance is during periods of heavy snowfall, or if your panels’ energy output starts to decrease.

Tax Incentives

There are different tax incentives you can take advantage of when you have a solar system installed. Homeowners are eligible for the 26% federal solar investment tax credit, provided they have some federal income tax liability against which this credit can be applied. Buying solar panels for homes allows you to benefit from the federal solar tax credit and other local solar incentives. You can get a tax credit for 26% of the cost of the solar system when you file your taxes until the end of 2022, after which it will decrease annually.

Cost

The average cost of a solar panel system for a home is close to several thousand dollars. The amount that you will save with solar panels varies depending on how much you spend on electricity. Some people opt to enter a solar lease. While solar leases allow you to avoid the upfront costs of installing solar, they provide you with much lower savings over the lifetime of the system. Also, because you don’t own the system when you have a solar lease, you might not be eligible for solar incentives like the federal tax credit. 

If you decide to purchase solar panels, shop around and search for incentives. Keep in mind that you don’t have to buy solar panels — you can lease them, too. This offers a lower upfront cost, although since you don’t own the panels, they won’t raise the value of your home, and you may not be eligible for incentives. Make sure you’re well informed before you install them.

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