Did you know the average family pays nearly $30,000 to go solar? Price is the number one objection families have when considering solar. So, we took it upon ourselves to write a list of the best solar saving hacks for you. Think of this as your solar buyers guide. 1. Act Fast for Tax Credits This is one of the best ways to save on solar and it's still surprising to me how few homeowners are aware of the 26% tax credit available for going solar. Unfortunately, you must act fast because this tax incentive is not permanent. It’s already on borrowed time since it has now been extended through 2022 and will decrease to 22% in 2023. The program will end in 2024. For a $30,000 installation, waiting a year could cost you $1,200. Waiting two years could cost $7,800. 2. Expand Solar Panel Options
Another great way to save on a solar installation is to broaden your solar horizons. The solar industry has grown tremendously in the last ten years, adding dozens of new manufacturers. Many of them come in significantly cheaper, with better factory guarantees and even higher efficiencies. Don't let the name of your panels cost you thousands of dollars more for no additional value. One of the best and worst things to happen to the solar industry was when the famous electric car company that starts with a “T”, got into solar. It was great because it made solar more mainstream and attractive. Bad, because that's the first thing homeowners ask for, and it’s often not the best option for them. Consider installing some of the lesser-known brands. 3. Know Your Energy Needs It's important that the homeowner understands their energy usage by reviewing their last 12 months of electricity bills. Energy usage fluctuates throughout the year, so it's imperative to review at least 12 months. If not, it’s highly likely the system installed will either be too small or too large for their family's needs. Taking the few minutes to review your usage with a solar specialist can save you stress, time, energy, and money. 4. Plan Ahead for Future Household Changes This hack can be considered part B to the previous as it pertains to sizing your system. It’s best to plan for future additions or downsizing. This could include purchasing new high energy usage products such as Jacuzzi's, family moving in or even preparing for an empty nest. Adding a couple extra panels in the beginning will save you from paying a crew to install them later. Not to mention the possibility of needing to upgrade other equipment if it pushes your system over capacity. 5. Get Multiple Quotes This step is self-explanatory. Just like any other major purchase, you should shop around. Check to see what's available in your area. While going solar can be a costly endeavor, it can be even more costly to go with the first quote you receive. We advise that you not only compare prices but also guarantees, equipment, and incentives. When possible, shop with local companies. Larger companies tend to charge much higher rates to cover overhead and high salesperson fees. 6. DIY Unfortunately, many homeowners don't know that they can install solar themselves. This can save them thousands on installation. We offer a verity of DIY options and assist the homeowner through the process. If you, a family member, or a friend are handy, this hack can save you the most money. 7. Trim Trees Just a few weeks ago, I received a call from a homeowner that had an 8kw system installed on his roof, but he was producing less than 1Kw of power. He was asking us to repair his system. While the system had much more than just one problem, a major issue was shading from his neighbor's tree. We were able to increase his system output by 3x with just that improvement. The time his system was down cost him hundreds in electricity. If you follow these tips, we are sure you will cut your solar costs in half, if not more. Which hack do you think would save you the most on your solar installation? Let us know your favorite hack. If you have a suggestion not on the list, write it in the comments below.