What incentives exist to help make solar more affordable?

There are numerous ways to pay for home solar, but the array of incentives from different levels of government and local utilities makes solar even more affordable. First, it’s good to know what kind of solar system you need, and the place to learn about it is at Energy.gov

If you live in the United States…

The big tax credit you always hear about… as explained by SEIA.org

A tax credit is a dollar-for-dollar reduction in the income taxes that a person or company claiming the credit would otherwise pay the federal government. The credit you receive is based on the amount of investment in solar equipment. Both the residential and commercial Federal tax credit are equal to 30 percent of the investment which began construction through 2019. The credit then steps down to 26 percent in 2020 and 22 percent in 2021. After 2023, the residential credit will drop to zero while the commercial and utility credit will drop to a permanent 10 percent.

The best place for information on solar tax incentives and rebates is from the government directly, on the EnergyStar Solar System tax credits page.

To see if you qualify for any local or State rebates, check the Rebate Finder at EnergyStar.gov.

We could never keep up with all of the solar rebates, but luckily there are many websites that do, and do it well. For each state we’ll provide a generalized overview of how to get rebates and a link to an up-to-date database of state-based solar energy rebates for the United States.

If you live in California…

See all current solar rebates and incentives for California. (Note: You’ll need to use the site filters to narrow this down to residential solar opportunities.)

Types of Solar Incentives for Homeowners in California (Last Updated: 1/20/17)

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Get money back

Use government and utility incentives. Learn more about solar tax rebates.