If you have a passion for sustainability, and you are ready to take the next step in transforming your home into a green one, now is a great time to do so. The Solar Energy Industries Association reports that the price of home solar panel systems has dropped by a yearly average of over 60% over the past decade.
In 2011, for instance, you could expect to pay over $50,000 for a six-kilowatt-hour system while in 2021, this price had dropped to between $16,0000 and $21,000. You don’t just save immediately upon installation, but also along the entire lifespan of your system, saving over $30,000 in energy bills in 20 years.
Homes with solar energy installed sell at a 20% faster rate than those without it, which is good news if you have bought a home as an investment or if you’d like to move in a few years. When choosing your system, keep the following considerations in mind.
Choosing the Right Solar Panels for Your Home
As advised by solar panel specialists Eco Watch, when comparing different solar panel brands, you should prioritize qualities such as durability, efficiency, and competitive pricing. Select panels that are suitable for your zone. Some are specifically made to withstand extreme temperatures, which is great news if you live in a very hot or cold region.
Also, check out the warranty coverage. Solar panels can be costly to maintain if problems occur. A solar system will usually have two warranties: a performance and equipment guarantee. The former typically guarantees 90% production over 10 years, and 80% at 25 years. The equipment, meanwhile, should be guaranteed for a minimum of 10 years.
Availing of Solar Energy Grants, Loans, and Mortgages
Grants for renewable energy are provided to rural homeowners, farms, Native American tribes, and other groups, so check if you are eligible. You might also be able to access an FHA loan, which is given to people that meet specific criteria. The latter include a minimum credit score of 660, a maximum combined loan to value of 100%, and a maximum total debt to income ratio of 45%.
Finally, you might want to take out a special loan called an Energy Efficiency Mortgage, which is tacked onto your existing mortgage. This loan is available to groups like mortgage holders, veterans, and people who may not be able to obtain attractive interest rates from private financial groups.
Considering the Pay as You Go System
This system is a low-cost solution for those who don’t necessarily want to own a solar system, but who want to have it installed in their homes. In this model, an energy provider pays for installation and maintenance and the homeowners just pay for the amount of energy they use. Savings are smaller but they still beat traditional energy costs and of course, they allow homeowners to feel more like a part of the ‘green movement’.
Solar energy is always a good investment, both for your pocket (in the long-term) and for the Planet. To lower your expenditure, choose quality panels that have a long guarantee. To reduce your costs, take advantage of available grants or consider a pay as you go system.
Alex Grogoyan is a Professional Home Improvement and Lifestyle Writer. He has been in the industry for over 6 years and has been writing for Chique Home Living since 2019. His work has been featured in popular platforms such as Spruce Home, Better Homes & Garden, and more.