When you think of Massachusetts, you may think of the historical city of Boston, its championship sports teams, or distinctive pronunciation of the letter “R”. Now, it’s time to add a new association to the list because Massachusetts solar incentives and programs are now considered some of the best in the country. In this article, we break down these incentives and explain why solar panels are such a great investment in Massachusetts in 2016.
What are the best Massachusetts solar incentives?
Below are several of the top MA solar incentives that we recommend to prospective solar shoppers in Massachusetts:
- Residential Renewable Energy Income Tax Credit: When it comes to clear cut state solar incentives, it doesn’t get a lot simpler than the MA renewable income offer. Under this credit, the owner of a solar energy system can deduct 15% of the system (up to $1,000) from their state income taxes.
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificates: In Massachusetts, homeowners can sell the solar renewable energy certificates (SRECs) that their panels generate for up to $350 per megawatt-hour (MWh). In other words, if you install a 5 kilowatt (kW) system that generates 5 MWh per year, you could make as much as $1,750 each year by selling your SRECs in the SREC market. Utilities will purchase SRECs to meet their state Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) goals.
- Net metering in Massachusetts: Solar homeowners receive bill credits for their solar electricity at the same retail rate that they pay for their electricity in Massachusetts thanks to net metering. Though there have been several net-metering battles in Massachusetts, this incentive is still available for now – make sure you use it.
Additional Benefits of Solar Power in Massachusetts: Solar Programs
- Mass Solar Loan Program: This new, innovative state-level incentive allows residential homeowners to buy their solar PV system with a fixed-term, low-interest loan. By purchasing a solar energy system directly, rather than leasing it through a more complex third-party ownership agreement, Bay State homeowners are able to retain more of their system’s value over its lifetime. This program is a major reason for solar’s rising popularity in Massachusetts – administrators specifically developed and launched this program to support homeowners who want to own their solar energy systems outright.
- Massachusetts Solar Tax Exemptions: There are two major tax exemptions for solar homeowners to note in addition to the income tax break: Massachusetts’ sales tax and property tax incentives. Solar equipment purchases are not taxed at the time of sale, and the value of solar energy systems are not incorporated into property tax assessments. Both of these tax breaks are another financial incentive for homeowners looking to go solar in Massachusetts.
The Federal ITC is a top MA solar incentive
The value of solar incentives in Massachusetts is even greater when taking into account the recent extension of the federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC) for solar. In addition to the state-specific incentives and programs available in MA, you can reduce the cost of your PV solar energy system by 30 percent thanks to this great government program. Keep in mind that the ITC applies only to those who buy their PV system outright (either with a cash purchase or solar loan), and that you must have enough income for the tax credit to be relevant.
Wondering where to find the top-rated solar companies in MA?
The EnergySage Massachusetts Solar Marketplace allows you to compare quotes from the best local solar installers in the Commonwealth. Our mission is to make going solar as easy as booking a flight online, and our all-inclusive online experience helps you explore various solar options and calculate annual returns for your solar panel installation. To get started, find out how affordable solar panels are in Massachusetts with our Solar Calculator, or simply register your property today to receive no-obligation solar quotes from pre-screened installers.