You might live in a zip code where Solar installers are setting up shops on almost every street corner, or you might live somewhere that if you considered getting solar panels on your roof that your neighbors will think you are crazy. Either way, you need to determine if solar panels are right for your home, your budget, and the area that you live. Solar panels do have an upfront investment cost, don’t make an expensive mistake by assuming that solar will save you money. Before you give in to sales pressure, use the following factors to determine if you need solar.
Consider the Tax Incentives
In 2021, Congress authorized a 22 percent tax credit for solar panels installation. Some states add extra incentives that can decrease your overall tax bill. If you are serious about installing solar panels on you home, then your timeframe to receive the tax incentives is limited to Congress and your state’s legislature.
Evaluate Your Electric Bill
Depending on how much money you pay for your monthly electric bill, you can determine how much savings you could expect with solar panels. Lately, with more people staying at home, the average monthly electric bill has risen. If your work position is happy with workers keeping their remote functions, then you might be looking at a permeant increase to your household expenses to include your electricity bill.
Get Some Estimates
With a few online searches, you can quickly find estimate calculators that can use your address, average electricity bill, and the total sunlight exposure to give you a rough estimate on the cost of a solar installation on your home. However, it is always in your best interest to reach out to local solar professionals to determine labor costs and physically view your property. It doesn’t hurt to shop around for a solar professional who will install your solar array and go an excellent job.
Work with your chosen solar professional to decide the best equipment options that fit your needs and lifestyle choices. Beware of a solar professional who offers only one specific type of solar panel; this may be the only panel that they could get ahold of, or it may be a panel that provides the highest markup. Keep in mind the high-end solar panel doesn’t automatically offer the best efficiency return. Do your research.
Besides the panels, you need to decide if you will have a grid tie in or go entirely off the public electricity grid. (Note: most homes with typical lifestyle choices cannot run on solar energy alone.) The other thing to consider, which would increase your installation costs, is whether you will have a battery storage option. Suppose you live in an area of the country that gets frequent snowstorms, hurricanes, wildfires or wind storms/tornados. In that case, you might want to consider getting solar panels with battery storage to provide power to your home when your area loses it. Most companies offer package deals to install both the panels and the batteries.
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