On average, you can save $1,500 a year on energy costs by going solar. Depending on where you live, you may even get tax breaks from your local government for using solar power. 

Using solar power isn’t just good for your wallet, it’s also good for the environment. One simulation estimated that if everyone in the world switched to solar power the average temperature would decrease by 2°C and solar radiation in desert areas would decrease by 10%. 

To decide if solar power is an economical option for you, consider solar panel cost for your area.

Questions to Ask Yourself Before Going Solar

Unfortunately, solar power isn’t for everyone. Today, solar panels are still an expensive investment. You may not see returns for a long time. Also, not every home is situated well for collecting solar energy with panels. 

Initial Costs vs. Future Savings 

When figuring out how much a residential solar panel system will cost you, look at your current energy bill. You’ll need a system big enough to power your current energy consumption. 

On average, solar systems cost between $3 and $5 per watt. The average solar system costs $15-25 thousand dollars. If you save $1,500/year on energy bills with solar, then it will take you 16 years to reach a point where you’re saving money. 

Do You Have Enough Sun?

Another factor to consider is whether or not your house is enough to direct sunlight for solar panels. You may have to set up solar panels in a sunny part of your yard.

If you get less sunlight on your property, then you have to compensate with more solar panels, which will make the system more expensive. 

Solar Panel Cost 

The upfront costs of going solar are still worth it for people with the cash to invest. Also, solar panels increase your home value. If you plan on staying in your home for a long time, then you’ll see money-savings eventually. 

For many people, just being more energy efficient is motivation enough to go solar. 

Price Expectations 

When you begin your search for “solar companies near me,” you’ll run into many different price points. If a solar company’s price seems too good to be true, it probably is. 

Before getting an estimate, be aware of trade standards and costs so you know what price to expect for good quality. Lesser quality solar panels aren’t worth your money because they’ll break down sooner and won’t create as much energy. 

State Incentives 

Many states offer incentives for getting solar, which cuts down on your price tag significantly. For example, California offers a 25% tax break to go toward your solar system. 

California also offers a rebate for the amount of solar energy your system is for. That rebate can range from $500 to $0.95 per watt capacity for your system. 

Make sure to check your local rebates when you’re researching installing solar panels for your home. 

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There are pros and cons to going solar. Solar panel costs vary state by state and home by home. Hopefully, this article helped you determine how to calculate the costs of solar panels for your home.

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