2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Carson, CA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Carson.
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 May 04, 2023
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What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Carson?
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
The term "solar incentives" generally refers to financial incentives put in place by solar companies and the government to encourage increased use of renewable energy by making the installation and use of solar panels more affordable. You may qualify for several 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 California government and others from the federal government. Types of solar incentives might include:
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs are credits that can be sold to your utility company (or other buyers) for cash that normally counts as part of your taxable income. Generally, there is a small threshold of energy production to meet before your solar system qualifies for SRECs or similar performance-based incentives. These kinds of incentives are generally handled at the state level.
- Tax Credits: Unlike tax deductions, tax credits reduce, dollar-for-dollar, the amount of income tax that you owe the federal government.
- Tax Exemptions: Your solar panels may qualify for both sales tax and property tax exemptions. Sales tax exemptions are applied at the time of purchase. Property tax exemptions allow you to ignore the added value of the solar panels when calculating property taxes on your house.
- Net Metering: Net metering is an incentive you can get after your solar panels are up and running. If you have a net metering agreement with your Carson utility company, it will subtract the value of the excess energy your solar system produces from your utility bill each month. In some areas, this credit is dollar-for-dollar, while in other places you might get refunded a percentage of the value.
- Rebates: Solar rebates may be provided by your county or state, or by your local utility company. These rebates are essentially cash back that is applied after you purchase solar panels and before tax credits are calculated.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal solar incentives are probably the first thing that you think of when you think about solar incentives. It's likely that you've heard of the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC. This incentive is a tax credit that reduces your taxes by a certain percentage of the money you spend on your solar system.
The ITC can be applied to a solar system installed on your primary or secondary residence in the United States. The solar system has to have been installed after January 1, 2006 on a property you own for you to claim the credit. Originally, the ITC covered 30% of all system installation costs (panels, labor, accessories and equipment), although the amount has fluctuated over the years between 26-30%. The installation date of your solar system will determine what percentage you are eligible for. There is no cap on the claim amount.
Your local Carson solar panel installer can provide more information about the ITC and how it may apply to your situation.
In August 2022, the ITC (now referred to as the Clean Energy Credit) was expanded and extended by the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act. Homeowners are now eligible for a credit of 30% of the total solar system installation costs for projects that began after January 1, 2022 and will be finished by the end of 2032. This percentage will then decrease annually until the Clean Energy Credit ends in 2035. Starting in 2023, it will also be easier to get credits for energy storage systems under this new program.
More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. The easiest way to learn more about how the new Clean Energy Credit will apply to you is to talk with your local Carson solar panel company.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Tax credits, rebates and more can be provided at multiple levels. In addition to federal solar incentives, there are often state and local ones, too. Some incentives are ongoing, while others are offered for only a limited time. Your local solar incentives might come from the California government, or from your specific county or municipality.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Carson
The nationwide use of solar energy has gone up tremendously in the past 15 years, in part due to the growth in the number of solar incentives. You can obtain these incentives from your local utility company, the California government or the federal government. Your local Carson solar panel installer can give you more information about which incentives you should apply for, and get you feeling good about making the change to renewable energy today.
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EcoWatch's Carson, 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 are intended to apply to a property you own that is located within the United States, and most secondary residences will fall under this distinction. 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.
What are the top solar panel installation companies near me?
To find the best solar panel installation companies near you, take a look at our article on the top solar companies in Carson.
What are some environmental benefits of installing solar panels on my home?
You can reduce 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. Solar is also a renewable energy source, meaning that switching your home over lessens the drain on our planet's resources.
How long until the federal solar tax credit ends?
The federal solar tax credit, previously called the ITC and now titled the Clean Energy Credit, is scheduled to end on January 1, 2035. The current 30% credit will end in 2032, replaced by a 26% credit in 2033 and a 22% credit in 2034.
Can I apply for incentives both towards the up-front cost of solar panels, and later as reimbursement?
Yes, you can claim both rebates and tax credits towards the cost of solar panels. Depending on which incentives you are applying for, they may apply in a different order. Make sure that you talk to your solar installer or a local tax professional to confirm that you are claiming the correct incentives and getting the most money you can.
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.