Let’s face it. If you are considering a residential solar panel system, two of your biggest questions are probably (1) what it will cost to purchase it, and (2) how much will maintenance cost?
For the average homeowner, the retail cost of a solar array can range from $15,000-50,000, depending on your power needs.
But with tax incentives and rebates offered by many governmental entities and some manufacturers, your out-of-pocket expenses associated with installing solar panels can be reduced by 80% or more.
You can also reduce expenses associated with switching to solar power by cutting down on energy usage, or by choosing to offset only a portion of your electricity bill with solar. The fewer panels you purchase as part of a solar panel system, the more you can save. If your initial solar array is not enough, you can always add more panels to it in the future.
Some homeowners choose to lease solar panels instead of purchasing them outright. There are a variety of contractual arrangements that may be offered by solar manufacturers whereby the solar array is installed on your property, but the company continues to own and pay for maintenance of the panels. In turn, you purchase reduced cost solar electricity at a fixed rate over the life of the lease.
Financing solar panels is another option. Property Assessed Clean Energy Loans allow you to pay for energy efficient upgrades like panels via a property tax increase – usually with no money down.
When it comes to maintaining a solar panel system, the cost is negligible. Components are manufactured for a lifetime of 25-35 years. As long as the panels are kept clean, they should continue to function without issue for many years.
The bottom line is that the answers to questions related to solar panel system costs can be summarized by: “it varies.” Yet, homeowners should not be dissuaded from solar power by potential costs. Over the long run, switching to solar electricity will save money, protect against rising energy costs and also cut carbon footprints.