As more and more solar panels are being installed in houses and businesses, you might be wondering “Are solar panels worth it in the USA?” Lets us look at some facts and figures to show you that they are definitely worth it in the USA.
As of December 2021, the US has reached 113.5-gigawatt solar PV capacity, which is enough to power 21.8 million American homes. Many homeowners are enjoying a number of benefits for using solar energy including a 30% federal tax credit. So, making that investment in solar panels just might be the right decision for you.
Benefits of Solar Panels
Solar Panels are a nifty investment in your home with long-term benefits. Besides being ecologically friendly, solar panels are also very affordable these days. Take a look at some of the benefits of having solar panels:
1. Decreases the electric bill
As we know the fuel source for solar panels is free of cost sunlight, so the first thing you will notice after installing the panels is a change in your electric bill. Depending on the geographical positioning of your home and weather conditions, the amount of solar energy produced will determine how much you save on utilities.
2. Earn a tax rebate
Are you thinking that installing a solar panel system may cost a lot? Consider this, DC for a panel system costing $30,000, you will get a $9000 tax rebate in federal taxes. Then if you calculate the local and state tax credits, the price may just come down to half. The government is trying to encourage the growth of the solar industry, hence the added incentives. So, take the initiative now, while this benefit lasts.
3. Increases your property value
Recent studies in the real estate market have shown that the resale value of a home increases when it comes with a solar panel system, sometimes even more than a renovated kitchen or living room. So, if you want to invest in your home, look into your local market and see if the solar panel will benefit your resale value.
4. Helps reduce your carbon footprint
The best aspect of having solar panels is their positive impact on the environment. Solar panels can successfully provide electricity for your homes without emitting any toxic chemicals or gas. Solar energy is becoming increasingly popular among businesses and eco-conscious people for its environmental benefits.
5. Faster ROI
At the end of the day what matters is how much your return on investment in solar and its payback period. Although it may cost you more at the initial stage, with the tax rebates and added incentives from the government the payback period can be shortened to 5-7 years. After that, your ROI will increase revealing the maximum advantage of having the solar panel system.
How much will your Solar Panel cost?
When you are getting solar panels for your home, think of it as an investment. The solar panels are built to last for 35-40 years and they can survive on minimal maintenance. So even if the initial cost of putting up your system is higher, it will definitely pay off in the long run.
So, let’s talk numbers! Depending on the size of your system, your location, and the quality of your products a solar panel system of 10KW power can cost between $15,000-$25,000 after the tax incentives.
The major cost will be on your photovoltaic panels. Since it’s a long-term investment you can consider getting more effective and durable products. There are a few different types available:
- Monocrystalline Solar Panels: This is the most energy-efficient option. It will cost you about $10,000 to $15,000 for a 10kW solar panel system.
- Polycrystalline Solar Panels: This is a little less efficient product but a more affordable option for many. A 10kW Polycrystalline Solar Panel System will cost around $9000 to $10000.
- Thin-Film Solar Panels: Popular among businesses, these solar panels require more space and cost between $10,000 and $15,000 for a 10kW system.
Besides the panel, you also will need to get an inverter to get the appropriate power around your house. There are two main types of Inverter Technology- String Inverters and Microinverters: A string inverter connects your entire panel system to one inverter. This may affect the total system performance when partial shade falls on a single panel. However, this drawback is solved by using Microinverters in every panel. But it comes with an increase in costs.
The next item will be your battery system which will store the energy produced during the day to power your devices during the night. This also depends on whether you want to store the energy, if not then the excess energy produced by your system can be fed into the public grid for a tariff.
Since battery systems can be expensive many people opt out of them. However, if you are looking to get completely off-grid, you can get different types of batteries in the market. Lithium-ion batteries are the most efficient and long-lasting.
However, to get the correct competitive pricing, you can get a quote from your local installer.
How will you pay for the Solar Panel?
When it comes to the payment for your solar panel system you have 3 options:
- Cash Purchase: If you have some capital pay for the installation upfront. This will maximize your solar savings and get you the advantage of solar credit as well.
- Solar Loan: You are still eligible for the tax rebate if you get a solar loan and prefer to pay for the system gradually.
- Solar Lease: This option is for you if you want someone else to monitor and maintain your system. However, you will not be eligible for the tax rebate.
So, Are Solar Panels Worth it in the USA?
Your Solar Panel system will be worth the money only if you can get a return on your investment. And in the current market, your solar panel system promises to do just that. Let us point out why it’s worth the investment-
- It can save on your electric bill.
- With added incentives and tax rebates, you will get a shorter payback period for your investment.
- The ROI will be quite lucrative-first from the reduced electric bills and then more from tariffs of extra energy supplied to the grid.
- Using clean energy will reduce your carbon footprint.
- Solar Panel System increases the value of your property.
The cost of Solar Panel installation has decreased by 22% and combined with many rewarding benefits from the government, solar panels are currently at the height of their popularity. This is the right time to invest in solar panels. Besides saving money, you can actually see profits off this investment in as less as 7-8 years!
Read More: Why Do Solar Panels Need To Face South?
With biofuel becoming scarce each day, tech giants like Tesla are switching to solar energy. Whether you are looking to save money or reduce your carbon footprint, the solar panel is definitely worth investing in. This is a long-term investment that will be beneficial for you in energy saving costs.
1. Are solar panels a waste of money?
Answer: With current tax breaks and lower cost of solar installation, solar panels will definitely save money for you. They are a clean source of energy and very cost-effective. So, it can be said that solar panels are not a waste of money.
2. Are solar panels a good investment in 2021?
Answer: Yes, with the advancement of technology, solar panel systems have become very efficient. They can help save you money on energy costs at the same time make your home environmentally friendly.
3. How long does it take for solar panels to pay for themselves?
Answer: Currently, there are many incentives from the government to increase the use of solar energy. Solar Panels can have a federal tax rebate of 30% and combined with local and state tax breaks, they become quite affordable. Some solar panel systems can be paid off in 5-7 years only.
4. How long do solar panels last?
Answer: The current solar panels in the market are built to last for about 25-30 years.
5. What is the maintenance cost of solar panels?
Answer: Solar panel systems usually do not require much maintenance. The major cost will be an annual inspection which can cost about $150 per annum.