Different people have many different reasons for exploring the option of going solar at home. Some folks prefer environmental conservation, whereas others look to disconnect from ‘the grid’. Others have financial imperatives driving them to alternative solutions, whilst still other folks see that renewable energy is a booming industry only projected to grow further, and they want to be part of the leak before the dam breaks into a flood.
But what are your reasons for considering solar energy? Are you looking for a sound investment, or are you Jones-ing for the next best thing in energy tech? Are you looking to set a trend in your neighborhood, or are you trying to keep up with trends already being set around you?
Whatever your reasons, there are a multitude of considerations to parse through when deciding if solar is the right decision for you. In order to try to make your decision that much simpler, we here at McClintock Electric want to offer a list of the Top 5 Reasons to Go Solar at Home.
#5 – Return on Investment (ROI)
When properly maintained, solar panels have a better long-term ROI than a brand-new car, despite the comparable cost of both. Like a new vehicle, financing can also be available for qualified customers.
So, what’s the difference?
- Potential $$ Back Returns with solar (while cars depreciate);
- Longer performance life with solar panels; 25 years optimum performance guaranteed by warranty, still functional after that period;
- Average car ownership ~8.4 years [iSeeCars.com] / More costly maintenance than solar panels in that time, more risk in the course of use;
- Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) – Owners of new residential & commercial systems can deduct 26% of the cost from their taxes in 2020; 22% in 2021; 10% in 2022;
#4 – Raises the Value of Assets
Installing solar panels not only benefits you while you live in the home, it also benefits future generations of owners by raising the value of your property!
- Is your home a family property, and you want to make maintenance more manageable for those you leave behind?
- Is your business looking to increase the value of its assets?
- Are you hoping to upgrade your starter home?
- Are you a property owner with tenants and hope to maximize the efficiency of your rentals?
- Are you a traditionalist seeking long-term self-sufficiency?
If the answer to any of these questions is yes, investing in solar panels offers a solution to all these problems.
#3 – Save Credits, Save $$!!
Net Metering is the system in which excess energy generated by solar panels is sold back to the grid by the owner of the panels that created the energy. The legal limit for energy production per individual household is 120%. That means that depending on the power of the system you install, measured in kilowatts (kW), if your energy consumption is at 80% of what your panels generate, you could deposit the remaining 20-40% of your surplus power back into the grid at a future profit!
It may only take mere lifestyle changes to make profiting from your investment in solar possible. Keeping appliances unplugged when not in use and turning off lights when not in a room are two such economical examples. If you can winnow your home energy consumption to an adequate level that is still below what your panels generate, you may be eligible to deposit the excess energy they create and profit from your investment in solar.
However, keep in mind that net metering isn't a way to a new paycheck according to Energysage.com. In short, it's a way to run up credits with your local electric company in order to use them later in the year when your solar system isn't getting as much light, so your electric usage doesn't come out-of-pocket. So, essentially you're racking up IOUs from the electric company that you can "cash" in when you need them.
Include that with the Solar ITC, and your investment could net a bundle in long term savings!
Want to see what your solar energy potential is in your state? Check it out!
#2 – Integrate Your Solar Into Your Smart Devices
Depending on the system you choose, many solar power systems allow you to utilize smart ownership! Does your traditional electric utility do that?
When your optimized solar array is installed, you will be able to connect to them via a digital app that will allow you to monitor their health. If one panel needs attention, the system will alert you so that you, or the repair person, know exactly where to focus attention when necessary.
How much easier can repairs and maintenance be?
#1 – Reduce Traditional Safety Hazards
Are you concerned about gas lines in your home?
Carbon monoxide gas (CO2) is an odorless, colorless vapor that when left to gather in an non-ventilated area can lead to symptoms of poisoning, or even death. If you are hoping to minimize your gas line usage, or remove it completely by installing a solar-powered water heater and/or other electric or solar-powered appliances to replace your old gas-run appliances, your home will be safer, cleaner, and prepared for eventualities.
Perhaps you don’t want to give up gas completely, and only want to keep a gas line for your stove? Great! You’ve eliminated other gas-heated appliances, and your home is still safer because of that. Eliminating some isn’t moot because you haven’t eliminated all. If your goal is minimization of safety hazards and minimization is occurring, then your goals are being met!
Granted, swapping for alternative appliances may require a greater capital investment, but the safety assurances coupled with the long-term earning potential of a solar array could offset the capital cost over time.