Category Archives: Cost Benefit

Articles concerning the pricing of solar and the economic benefits of going solar.

using your stimulus check for olar

Thinking of investing your stimulus check? Consider solar.

Reading Time: 4 minutes

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) began sending out stimulus checks earlier this month, providing much-needed cash to a country hit hard by both the health and economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. If you’re fortunate enough to not need the cash right away, and are weighing your various options for what to do with the check, you may have encountered other articles telling you how you should spend this cash. We’re not going to do that: whether you use the money to buy something special, put it away for a rainy day, donate it to a worthy cause, or convert the check into twelve-hundred dollar bills to turn your room into a snow globe, we won’t judge! 

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solar rebates 101

Solar rebates 101

Reading Time: 4 minutes

There are many different types of solar incentives out there – tax credits, performance-based incentives, and solar renewable energy certificates (SRECs) to name a few. Solar rebates are some of the most common solar incentives, and some of the easiest to understand. While not available in every solar market, those who can take advantage of rebates can significantly lower the upfront cost of going solar. 

In this article, we’ll give an overview of solar rebate incentives, provide sources for finding solar rebates in your area, and discuss how to apply for rebates for which you’re eligible.

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sdge time of use

Which SDG&E rate schedule is best? Understanding peak hours

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Are you a customer of San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E)? Whether you currently have solar panels on your roof, are considering solar, or don’t have any plans to generate your own electricity, SDG&E’s time-of-use (TOU) rates will have an impact on your monthly electricity costs. In the past, all SDG&E customers had the option of switching to TOU rates or remaining on their existing rate schedule. However, this began to change in early 2019 when SDG&E began the process of moving all residential customers (with a few exceptions) to a TOU plan. When it comes to choosing the right rate plan for your property, the best option for your home depends on your electricity use habits.

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cost of solar equipment declining over time

How have solar equipment costs declined over time?

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Over the last decade, the costs of solar have decreased from over $8 per Watt in 2009 ($/W) to under $3/W in 2019 on EnergySage, a decline of more than 60 percent in ten years. Over this timeframe, a primary driver of the declining cost of solar in the US has been technological improvements in the actual hardware that’s included in solar energy systems: solar panels and solar inverters.

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congress extends the solar tax credit itc

Solar tax credit – everything you need to know about the federal ITC for 2020

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Homeowners, solar companies, and industry advocates alike were given a big Christmas gift in 2015 when Congress approved the 2016 federal spending bill and extended the solar panel tax credit. The December 18 bill contained a 5-year solar tax credit extension, which makes solar energy more affordable for all Americans. Wondering how this impacts you? EnergySage has the answers.

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is solar worth it

Are solar panels really worth it?

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Every solar company has a variation of the same sales pitch, “did you know going solar can save thousands of dollars?” They make it sound so easy, but the truth is, whether solar is a smart long-term investment for you depends on a few major factors. So before you buy into the hype, we recommend you use this simple guide to cut through the sales jargon and determine if solar panels are actually worth the money.

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maryland srecs

SRECs in Maryland: prices, projections, and program status

Reading Time: 3 minutes

If you’re considering installing solar in Maryland, one incentive you should be aware of is solar renewable energy certificates (SRECs). Maryland is one of the few states that offers this performance-based incentive to people generating solar electricity. Property owners in Maryland who buy and install a solar panel system can earn hundreds of dollars each year by selling the SRECs their system generates.

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commence construction 2020 clause

An overview of the “commence construction” clause

Reading Time: 4 minutes

The country’s best solar incentive, the federal investment tax credit (ITC), is in the process of winding down. 2019 was the last year you can claim the full 30 percent tax credit. Starting in 2020, the credit drops to 26 percent, to 22 percent in 2021, and disappears entirely for homeowners in 2022. This impending deadline has prospective solar shoppers rushing to take advantage of the maximum credit while they still can – but how can you make sure you’re eligible for the current 26 percent credit? 

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north carolina duke energy rebate

Duke Energy solar rebates: a new solar incentive for North Carolina

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Update: Duke Energy has run out of available funds for rebates in 2020. Solar customers can join a waitlist for the rebate.

North Carolina has long been one of the top states for solar thanks to its utility-scale solar farms, but over the past few years, homeowners in the Tar Heel State haven’t seen many financial incentives to go solar. A newly-announced solar rebate from Duke Energy will help property owners in North Carolina save thousands on their up-front solar installation costs.

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new jersey trec program

NJ TRECs: the Garden State’s transition solar incentive

Reading Time: 4 minutes

New Jersey has always been one of the best states for solar: higher-than-average electricity rates and strong solar incentives have helped thousands of New Jerseyans achieve quick payback periods on their solar investments. Above all, the state’s renewable portfolio standard and associated solar renewable energy certificate (SREC) market have been instrumental towards growing solar throughout the state. However, in June 2018, the state decided to phase out SRECs in favor of a new, yet-to-be-established successor solar program. In an effort to bridge the gap between SRECs and the next phase of solar incentives, the Garden State decided is implementing an intermediate transition solar incentive, known as TRECs.

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