2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Alpine, CA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Alpine.
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.
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By EcoWatch Local Advisors
Data Analysis: James Savino
Ranking Methodology: Karsten Neumeister
Updated March 14, 2023
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What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Alpine?
Property Tax Exclusion for Solar Energy Systems and Solar Plus Storage System
Western Riverside Council of Governments - Home Energy Renovation Opportunity (HERO) Financing Program
Minimum financing: $5,000
The financing may not exceed fifteen percent (15%) of the market value of the property, up to the first seven hundred thousand dollars ($700,000) of the property’s market value, and ten percent (10%) of the remaining value of the Property above seven hundred thousand dollars ($700,000) minus any PACE assessment on the property The total amount of any annual property taxes and assessments shall not exceed five percent (5%) of the property's fair market value, determined at the time program financing is approved.
Local Option - Municipal Energy Districts
Self-Generation Incentive Program
Incentives will step down over time. See below for incentive amounts.
Renewable Market Adjusting Tariff (ReMAT)
LADWP - Feed-in Tariff (FiT) Program
Base price will step down over time as certain MW goals are met
California Solar Initiative - Solar Thermal Program
Single Family Residential Incentives:
Systems that displace natural gas: $29.85 per estimated therm displaced
Systems that displace electricity or propane: Funding has been exhausted
Systems that displace natural gas: $20.19 per estimated therm displaced
Systems that displace electricity or propane: $0.42 per estimated kWh displaced *** Note, funding has been exhausted in this category for SCE and PG&E
Solar Pool heating: $5.00 per estimated therm displaced
Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
Solar incentives encourage homeowners to make the switch to renewable energy by offering incentives that lower the financial burden of solar panel installation and use. These incentives could include upfront discounts, cash back or credit towards your monthly utility bill. Some incentives are provided by the federal government, some by the state of California and some by your specific utility company, county or municipality. Types of solar incentives might include:
- Tax Credits: These credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions (not deductions) in the amount of tax that you owe the federal government.
- Tax Exemptions: Tax exemptions may come in two forms. First, there is sales tax exemption, applied at the time you purchase your solar panels. The second is property tax exemption, which allows you to ignore the value added by your solar system when paying property tax on your house.
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and similar performance-based incentives are generally handled by your state government. Once your solar panel system meets the qualification threshold (generally a small amount of energy production), you are eligible to receive SRECs that can be sold to your utility company or other buyers. The money you make is generally considered part of your taxable income.
- Rebates: Some solar companies will help you claim a rebate, or partial refund after purchase, for your solar panels. Counties or states will also sometimes offer limited-time rebates. The value of a rebate will usually come off your total price before any 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 Alpine utility company, they will subtract the value of the excess energy produced by your solar system from your utility bill each month. In some locations, this is a dollar-for-dollar credit, while in other areas you might make back a percentage of the value.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal incentives are the kind of incentives that you are most likely to have some knowledge of. You've likely heard of the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC. This incentive is a tax credit that reduces your taxes by a specified percentage of the money you spend on solar panels for your home.
The ITC is applied to the total cost of installing a solar system, including the panels themselves as well as labor, equipment and accessories. You can claim this credit for panels installed after January 1, 2006 on a primary or secondary residence located in the United States that you own. From its original value of 30% of the total cost, the credit has fluctuated slightly between 26-30%, and you may qualify for varying percentages depending on when your project was completed. There is no maximum claim amount.
To better understand exactly how much the ITC could save you, talk to your local Alpine solar panel installer.
The ITC has been renewed and expanded following the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act in August 2022. It's also now called the Clean Energy Credit. Homeowners can now qualify for a credit of 30% of the total costs of solar system installation for projects started after January 1, 2022 and completed before the end of 2032. This percentage will then begin to decrease yearly until the Clean Energy Credit expires in 2035. Beginning in 2023, it will also be easier to get credits for energy storage systems under the new laws.
Click here to learn more about the new Inflation Reduction Act. Your local Alpine solar panel company can answer any questions you have and explain how the new Clean Energy Credit may apply to you.
State & Local Solar Incentives
In addition to those provided at the federal level, there are often also state solar incentives. Tax credits, rebates and more may be available at a more local level. These incentives might be distributed by the California government, or by your county or municipality. Certain incentives are ongoing, while others are available for a limited time.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Alpine
Nationwide solar energy use has gone up tremendously in the last 15 years, in part thanks to the increase in availability of solar incentives. You may get these incentives from your local utility company, the federal government or the California government. Speaking with your local Alpine solar panel installation expert is the best first step towards getting the most money possible when you switch to solar energy.
Best Regional Coverage
- Great warranty coverage
- Representatives are experts on local policies
- Concierge service ensures steady communication
- Slightly limited service offerings
- 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 Alpine, CA Solar Incentives FAQs
Can I get any financial incentives when I add solar panels to a rental property, vacation home or commercial property?
Many solar incentives apply to a property located within the United States that you own; most secondary residences will fall into this category. Other solar incentives may be available for commercial properties, depending on the details. We recommend getting in touch with your local solar installer and/or tax professional to best understand what incentives apply to your specific situation.
I already have solar panels. Do I qualify for any incentives?
If your solar panels were installed after January 1, 2022, you may qualify for the newly increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. If you installed your system between 2006 and 2021, you may qualify for a tax credit between 26% and 30%, depending on the date of installation. Talking to the company that installed your system, or any local Alpine solar installer, can help you learn what incentives you qualify for.
What are some environmental benefits of adding solar panels to my home?
You can decrease your carbon footprint by 250 pounds of CO2 a year by switching to solar panels. This adds up to approximately 5,000 pounds over 20 years. In addition, solar power is a renewable energy source, meaning that switching your home over reduces the drain on our planet's resources.
I want to trade in my old appliances for ones that are more energy-efficient. Are there any benefits I can get?
The new Inflation Reduction Act includes provisions for several incentives that reward homeowners for making eco-friendly upgrades. Some incentives include tax credits and rebates for installing new electric appliances. You can find more details about these incentives here.
Can I use a combination of solar and another type 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 plan with your local Alpine solar installer. They can help you as you plan for your project and also help you understand the various incentives that you will or won't 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.