2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Helena, AL - Tax Credits & Rebates

In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Helena.

You'll learn about:

  • Local & State Solar Incentives
  • Federal Tax Credits (Updated for 2023 and beyond)
  • Ways to optimize your solar investment

Solar installers are experts in maximizing your solar tax credits and rebates.
Get a free quote from one of our trusted Helena solar installers to see how much you can save.

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Data Analysis: James Savino

Ranking Methodology: Karsten Neumeister

Updated January 20, 2023

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We work with a panel of solar experts to create unbiased reviews that empower you to make the right choice for your home. No other site has covered renewables as long as us, which means we have more data and insider information than other sites. Our rankings are never affected by revenue or partnerships.

What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Helena?

Wood-Burning Heating System Deduction

Incentive Type:
Personal Tax Deduction

Local Option- Property Tax Exemption for Renewable Energy Faclities

Incentive Type:
Property Tax Incentive

Alabama Power - Residential Heat Pump Loan Program

Incentive Type:
Loan Program
Varies, up to 100% of project cost for qualifying customers

Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit

Incentive Type:
Personal Tax Credit
30% federal tax credit for systems placed in service after 12/31/2021 and before 01/01/2033. Good for: solar water heat, solar photovoltaics, biomass, geothermal heat pumps, wind (small), fuel cells using renewable fuels.

Source: https://www.dsireusa.org/


The phrase "solar incentives" broadly refers to financial incentives implemented by the government and by solar companies to encourage the use of renewable energy by making solar panels more affordable. You may be eligible for various kinds of incentives, including cash back, discounts or monthly utility bill credits, depending on your situation. Some incentives come from your specific utility company, county or municipality, some from the Alabama government and others from the federal government. Some broad categories of solar incentives include:

  • Rebates: Solar rebates may be offered by your state or county, or by your local utility company. These rebates work as partial refunds that are applied after your purchase of a solar system and before tax credits are calculated.
  • Net Metering: Net metering factors in after your solar panels are up and running. If you've signed a net metering agreement with your Helena utility company, they will subtract the value of the excess energy your solar system produces from your utility bill each month. In some locations, this is a dollar-for-dollar credit, while in others you may make back a percentage of the value.
  • Tax Credits: Tax credits lower, dollar-for-dollar, the amount of income tax you owe the government. These differ from tax deductions.
  • Tax Exemptions: These might come in the form of property tax exemptions, which let you exclude the value of your solar system when calculating the taxes you pay on your house. They may also include exemptions on sales tax at the time of purchase.

Federal Solar Incentives

Federal incentives are the type of incentives that you are most likely to have some knowledge of. You might have heard of the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC. The ITC is a tax credit that reduces your taxes by a specified percentage of the money you spend on your solar system.

The ITC applies to solar panels installed after January 1, 2006 on a primary or secondary residence that you own in the United States. Initially, the credit applied to 30% of the total cost — for panels, labor, equipment and accessories — although the percentage may range from 26-30%, depending on the installation date of your solar system. There is no cap on the claim amount.

Your local Helena solar panel installer can offer more information about the ITC and how it may apply to your situation.

The Inflation Reduction Act, passed in August 2022, added more provisions to the ITC (as well as renaming it to the Clean Energy Credit). The Clean Energy Credit is valid until 2035. Your solar installation project undertaken between 2022 and 2032 may qualify for a 30% tax credit; this amount will decrease slightly each year until the current program ends. The expansion also makes credits for energy storage systems even easier to claim, starting in 2023.

More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. To understand how the new Clean Energy Credit might apply to you, talk to your local Helena solar installers.

State & Local Solar Incentives

Some solar incentives are often also provided at the state and local level. Like with federal incentives, these could include tax credits, rebates and more. Incentives might be given by the state of Alabama, or by your county or municipality. Certain incentives may be available for only a limited time, while others are ongoing.

Next Steps for Installing Solar in Helena

There are many types of solar incentives: those given by the federal government, those given by the Alabama government and those given by local utility companies, to name a few. The use of solar energy has increased enormously in the last 15 years, thanks to these incentives. Reaching out to your local Helena solar panel installer is the right first step towards getting the most money possible when you switch to solar energy.

Best National Provider

SunPower

★★★★★
5.0

  • Most efficient panels on the market
  • National coverage
  • Cradle to Cradle sustainability certification
  • Great warranty coverage
  • Expensive
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

Best Technology

Tesla Energy

★★★★★
4.5

  • Price-match guarantee
  • Sleek, efficient, and durable solar panels
  • Best solar battery on the market
  • Some reported issues with customer service
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

EcoWatch's Helena, AL Solar Incentives FAQs

What if I add solar panels to a rental property, vacation home or commercial property? Will I still qualify for incentives?

Many solar incentives are intended to apply to a property you own that is located within the United States; most secondary residences fall into this category. Other solar incentives may be available for commercial properties, depending on the details. We recommend talking to your local solar installer and/or tax professional to fully understand what incentives may apply to your specific situation.

How can I find out if I qualify for solar incentives?

Generally, solar incentives apply to:

  1. a new solar panel system
  2. installed on property that you own
  3. within the U.S.
  4. within the date range specified by a particular incentive.

Specific incentives, including ones handled by the Alabama government or by your county/municipality, may have additional qualifications. Get in touch with your local Helena solar installer to discover what incentives your project may qualify for.

When does the federal solar tax credit end?

The Clean Energy Credit (formerly named the federal solar tax credit, or the ITC), is scheduled to end on January 1, 2035. Currently set at 30%, the credit will drop to 26% in 2033 and to 22% in 2034.

I want to trade in my old appliances for ones that are more energy-efficient. Are there any benefits I can apply for?

The new Inflation Reduction Act creates a variety of new financial incentives for making eco-friendly improvements to your home. More details regarding these incentives, including information about incentives for purchasing new appliances, can be found here.

Can I use multiple types of renewable energy to power my home?

You can power your home with multiple types of renewable energy, or a combination of renewable and non-renewable energy. Make sure you go over your ideas with your local Helena solar installation expert. They can help you as you plan for your project and give you an understanding of various incentives that you might or might not qualify for.

Our goal is to reach as many people as we can with sensible solutions like solar energy. Our team of full-time local researchers collects solar price and installation data for every city in America then compiles it to create these digestible city guides. If you want to read our solar expert's opinion on the top solar companies featured here, follow this link.

Solar incentive research was conducted by Melissa Smith and Karsten Neumeister. Local data analysis was conducted by James Savino. See something we missed or could do better? Email the editor.

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