Buying a solar energy system will likely increase your home’s value. A recent study found that solar panels are viewed as upgrades, just like a renovated kitchen or a finished basement, and home buyers across the country have been willing to pay a premium of about $20,000 for a home with an average-sized solar array. Additionally, there is evidence homes with solar panels sell faster than those without. In 2016, California homes with energy efficient features and PV were found to sell faster than homes that consume more energy. Keep in mind, these studies focused on homeowner-owned solar arrays. When it comes to third-party owned (TPO) systems, data shows that while they add some complexity to the real estate transaction, the overall impacts in terms of sales price, time on market, agreement transfers, and customer satisfaction are mostly neutral. In some cases, TPO systems can even add value. The PV Value® tool is helpful for both home sellers and homebuyers. It calculates the energy production value for a PV system and is compliant with Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice and has been endorsed by the Appraisal Institute for the income approach method. Make sure your appraiser uses this tool to get the most accurate estimate of your PV system’s value.
Installing solar panels is a great way to save money, however, it’s important to understand just when you can expect to see those savings. Some options allow savings the day the system is live, where as others come with an upfront investment and provide greater returns over time. If you borrow money with a loan or qualify for a lease, you can often reduce your monthly electric bill immediately. If you decide to do a pre-paid power purchase agreement, or buy the system outright, you will have an upfront expense, but save more in the long run.
If you prefer to buy your solar energy system, solar loans can lower the up-front costs of the system. In most cases, monthly loan payments are smaller than a typical energy bill, which will help you save money from the start. Solar loans function the same way as home improvement loans, and some jurisdictions will offer subsidized solar energy loans with below-market interest rates, making solar even more affordable. New homeowners can add solar as part of their mortgage with loans available through the Federal HERO, which allow borrowers to include financing for home improvements in the home’s ptoprty tax. Buying a solar energy system makes you eligible for the Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC, which is a 30 percent federal tax credit on your system that is available through 2022. Learn more about the ITC.
The amount of money you can save with solar depends upon how much electricity you consume, the size of your solar energy system, if you choose to buy or lease your system, and how much power it is able to generate given the direction your roof faces and how much sunlight hits it. Your savings also depend on the electricity rates set by your utility and how much the utility will compensate you for the excess solar energy you send back to the grid. Check the National Utility Rate Database to see current electricity rates in your area. In some cities around the country, solar is already cost competitive with the electricity sold by your local utility. The cost of going solar has dropped every year since 2010, a trend researchers expect to continue. Not only are the prices of panels dropping, so are the costs associated with installation, such as permitting and inspection—also known as “soft costs. It should also be noted that energy efficiency upgrades complement solar energy economically. By using Energy Star appliances and other products in your home, you’ll need less solar energy to power your home.
An energy audit is an assessment of your home that takes a look at current energy consumption and then identifies energy efficiency measures that you can conduct to make your home more efficient. An energy auditor can assess where a home is losing the most energy, and then propose improvements to make to help save energy – and reduce your utility bills.
Professional energy audits can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 60 hours to complete, depending on the size of your home or business. These professional auditors use a variety of tools to establish problem areas within your property, and come up with a list of suggested measures and actions that you can take in order to make your home more efficient.
With energy prices rising, homeowners are looking for ways to save money on their utility bills. Many homeowners will take measures on their own like caulking windows, adding insulation and filling-in leaky gaps, but energy audits can identify energy leaks that aren’t so obvious or easy to find. Energy auditing firms claim identifying and fixing these hidden leaks can not only save the homeowner up to 30% on their heating and cooling costs each year, but also on the potential expense of fixing things that don’t solve the problem.
Here’s what a typical audit might look like in your home:
An energy auditor will take a look at your building from the outside. They’ll examine a variety of components, including windows, walls, and eaves, to see if they can spot any major issues causing leaks into or out of your home.
The auditor will check out the attic (if you have one) to take a look at a few things. Most importantly, they will inspect your insulation to make sure it’s correctly installed and applied evenly between your walls. They’ll also evaluate the holes where electrical lines run to see if they’re properly sealed, or could be a source of leakage.
The auditor will examine your furnace and water heater. If either is on the older end, it is likely a candidate for an upgrade. They’ll also likely take a look at the filter in the furnace to ensure that it doesn’t require replacement. They’ll also check connections in the ducts in your basement to try and locate any possible leaks where you may be losing heat and energy.
While replacing appliances, furnaces, and water heaters cost significant money upfront, making the upgrade typically results in savings over the lifetime of the equipment. In many cases, upgrades will result in net savings in just a few years. Many utilities and local governments offer low-cost energy efficiency financing to make it easier to make the investment in energy efficient appliances.
Finally, audits usually include an inspection of the lighting in your home. If you’re using standard incandescent light bulbs, you can easily reduce your electricity costs by switching over to light-emitting diodes (LEDs) or compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs).
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A photovoltaic (PV) solar energy system is composed of solar panels, racking for mounting the panels on the roof, electrical wiring, and an inverter. From sunrise to sunset, the solar panels generate direct current electricity (DC) which is sent to the inverter. The inverter converts the DC into alternating current (AC), the type of electricity required for household use. The AC power is delivered directly to your home’s main electrical service panel for use by you and your family How does shade affect a solar system’s performance? It’s important to minimize shading because solar panels operate at optimal output when their entire surface is fully exposed to direct sunlight. The system will still produce energy if it is shaded but its output will lessen.
You can also read whether your home is a good candidate for solar to help when making the decision whether going solar is right for you. How long will a solar system last? Most Solar systems are designed to have a useful life of 50 years or more.* How much will I save with a solar system? Your current monthly energy use and the size of your system will determine your actual savings amount. And with little or no startup costs*, systems can start paying for themselves immediately. Savings will vary based on several factors, including system size, performance, your household’s average energy usage as well as any applicable solar credits, tax incentives, and current solar energy buyback (net metering) rates offered by your utility company. A detailed calculation of your potential return on investment (ROI) will be provided by Solar Company during your solar evaluation. Installing solar panels is a great way to save money, however, it’s important to understand just when you can expect to see those savings. Some options allow savings the day the system is live, where as others come with an upfront investment and provide greater returns over time. If you borrow money with a loan or qualify for a lease, you can often reduce your monthly electric bill immediately. If you decide to do a pre-paid power purchase agreement, or buy the system outright, you will have an upfront expense, but save more in the long run.
Get more information about what goes into calculating home solar panel system costs and other important solar energy questions to ask your installer. Will a home solar system increase my property taxes? Having a solar system typically adds value to your home.* Depending on where you live, there is often no increase in your property taxes. There are wide variety of financing options, including some that don’t require you to pay any upfront costs if you qualify. The cost of your solar system depends on several factors, including your current energy usage, your available amount of unshaded roof space, your local utility’s net metering policy, and other factors.
Learn more about how to calculate solar costs and how many solar panels you may need to power your home. Despite the generalities, you may hear in solar advertising, not all solar systems are created equal! Of all the solar panels on the market, Some Panels have the highest efficiency* and convert the highest amount of sunlight into electricity. This means our solar panels generate more power than conventional panels within the same amount of space, and you’ll need fewer panels to produce the energy you need. You can maximize your available roof space to choose the best, unobstructed location for electricity production. Our world-record panel efficiency* means you’ll save more money over time by choosing better panels.
The output of a solar system depends on which way your roof is orientated, and sizing the solar system correctly is the best way to save money and be efficient in the mean time, now we are getting into the specifics of maximizing the benefit of a solar power installation. The Solar Team will often advise people to go for a split array. Yes, having the panels facing south is best, if you are in Los Angeles however, this creates a rough bell-curve of output where you get a peak generation period during the middle of the day. Are you going to be able to use most of the solar power most of the time, 5kW system in summer, turning on as the sun comes up and turning off again at around 8 pm. As an aside, one of the most important points is the maximum output. sizing the solar system for a 5kW system almost never gets close to 5kW of output at any one time due to the angle and the orientation of the panels. This could be improved by sizing the solar system accordingly also with sun tracking, however, the cost of installing and maintaining an array that follows the sun does not pay for the increase you will get in output. It is much cheaper to just get a few extra panels. Look at google maps (or get out a compass) to see what roof sections you can install solar panels on. Anything south of west or east is usable. Panels facing east will output more power in the morning and panels facing west will output power in the afternoon. Compared to South, panels facing east or west will not output quite as much over the course of a year, however, losses are not that great, being more significant in winter when the sun is lower in the sky to the south.
Perhaps one of the most important points to consider is sizing the solar system accurately so you will know how much you pay for your power and when. If you have time of use billing, you are much better off generating solar power in the afternoon during the peak billing period. If your panels face west of south, you will push the output of your solar system into the afternoon, and during summer output will continue up until 8 pm. If we size the solar system accordingly and If you have time of use billing, That’s where you take an average of 30 cents per kWh when estimating the potential benefit to your power bill. Do you have shade? According to Renewable Energy World, shading of as little as 9% of a solar system connected to a central inverter, can lead to a system-wide decline in power output with as much as 54%. The below image is a great example of how micro inverters can significantly increase output. In this image, the system will be working at near maximum output, despite the sizing the solar system, patchy shade. With a string inverter, the system will be outputting almost no power because of the panels, I have heard a bit of talk about bypass diodes lately. It is important to state that bypass diodes are designed to help stop hot spots on panels from bird droppings and the like. They do not work in the same way as micro inverters and will not help maximize output in shaded conditions like micro inverters do. If you have patchy shade,
If sizing the solar system done in the right way and then if micro inverters or optimizers used then can significantly increase the output. the system will be working at near maximum output, despite the patchy shade. Summary We hope this information helps you cut through the sales talk. If it all gets too much, just keep it simple; solar can save you around $100 per kW per quarterly power bill and will output around 4 times its size, doing more in summer and less in winter.
With so many trendy investment opportunities available in today’s day and age, it’s easy to be skeptical of new products that boast promises of “saving you tons of money.” Solar panels are no different – saving money by reducing your electric bill is one of the main appeals and selling points for solar as a product and home upgrade. The simple answer to the question “do you Save money by going solar?” is yes. That being said, how much you’ll save depends on a number of factors. Direct hours of daily sunlight and the size and angle of your roof are both important, but local electricity rates play the biggest role in determining how much solar system can save you.
When you install solar panels on your roof, you are essentially turning your home into its own mini power plant. You generate renewable energy, reducing or eliminating your electricity costs altogether by going solar
Save money by going solar are depends on two simple factors:
The price you currently pay to buy electricity from the grid
The price you’ll pay to generate your own electricity with solar
Generally, the rule of thumb is if your electricity costs are higher than your solar costs, you’re going to see savings by switching to solar.
Regardless of going solar or not, you will continue to make an electricity payment every single month for as long as you require electricity – or until your solar purchased solar system is paid off. In turn, utility companies will continue to raise their rates year after year, and your costs will continue to increase. The grid will continue to fluctuate and electricity costs will peak at unexpected moments over the course of a year.
With solar, you avoid these issues by taking control of your costs. Instead you’ll pay a fixed monthly loan payment with an end date and eliminate your electricity bill completely! Once your loan payment is over, you’ll be generating your own renewable energy for free. Wouldn’t you rather put your money towards paying off an investment that’s adding value to your house at the same time as reducing or eliminatingyour electric bill and netting you savings right away? no brainer, right?
Of course, there are other factors included in the equation of how much you’ll be able to Save money by going solar such as your roof’s sun exposure and structural limitations, how much energy you use, and your zip code.
And the best reason to Save money by going solar is that The homeowners will get 30% tax credit, many of whom still view solar as beyond their financial reach or as a resource still unproven. Costs for home solar systems continue to plummet. Since the solar and wind Investment Tax Credit (ITC) was implemented in 2006, the cost of installing solar has dropped by more than 73 percent, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association. And the 30 percent tax credit for solar under the ITC, set to expire at the end of 2015, has been extended by Congress for an additional three years, followed by a two-year ramp-down period.