2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Ceres, CA - Tax Credits & Rebates

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

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 Ceres 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 Ceres?

Property Tax Exclusion for Solar Energy Systems and Solar Plus Storage System

Incentive Type:
Property Tax Incentive
100% of system value; 75% of system value exemption for dual-use equipment

Western Riverside Council of Governments - Home Energy Renovation Opportunity (HERO) Financing Program

Incentive Type:
PACE Financing
Eligible products can be financed for up to 25 years, depending on the useful life of the eligible product.
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

Incentive Type:
PACE Financing
Locally determined

Self-Generation Incentive Program

Incentive Type:
Rebate Program
For projects 30 kW or larger, 50% of incentive will be received up-front; 50% will be received based on actual kWh production over the first 5 years. For projects under 30kW, 100% of the incentive will be paid up front.
Incentives will step down over time. See below for incentive amounts.

Renewable Market Adjusting Tariff (ReMAT)

Incentive Type:
Feed-in Tariff

LADWP - Feed-in Tariff (FiT) Program

Incentive Type:
Feed-in Tariff
$0.17/kWh adjusted by a time of delivery multiplier
Base price will step down over time as certain MW goals are met

California Solar Initiative - Solar Thermal Program

Incentive Type:
Rebate Program
Step 1 Incentive Rates (contact utility to determine current incentive levels):
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
Commercial/Multifamily Incentives:
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

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/


Solar incentives encourage homeowners to switch their home over to renewable energy by offering incentives meant to lower the financial burden of solar panel installation and use. You might qualify for several kinds of incentives, including cash back, discounts or credit towards your monthly utility bill, depending on your situation. Some incentives come from your specific utility company, county or municipality, some from the state of California and others from the federal government. Categories of solar incentives include:

  • Tax Exemptions: Sales tax exemptions go into effect at the time of purchase for your solar panels. Property tax exemptions allow you to exclude the value that your solar panels add when you're calculating the amount of property tax you need to pay on your house.
  • Net Metering: Net metering is an incentive you can get after your solar system is up and running. If you've signed a net metering agreement with your Ceres utility company, the company will subtract the value of the excess energy your solar system produces from your monthly utility bill. In some places, this credit is dollar-for-dollar, while in others you may receive a refund equivalent to a percentage of the value.
  • Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and other performance-based incentives might be available to you if the solar system on your home produces over a specified (typically small) amount of electricity. Performance-based incentives are normally handled by the state government. You can sell any SRECs you have to your utility company or other buyers, and the money you make is generally considered part of your taxable income.
  • Tax Credits: Tax credits decrease, dollar-for-dollar, the total amount of tax you owe the federal government. Tax credits are different from tax deductions.
  • Rebates: Solar companies may help you claim a rebate, or partial refund of your purchase, for your solar system. States or counties will also sometimes offer limited-time rebates. The value of a rebate will usually be deducted from your total price before any tax credits are calculated.

Federal Solar Incentives

When thinking about solar incentives, you likely think of federal incentives first. The Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC, is the most commonly known federal solar incentive. The ITC provides you with a tax credit for a predetermined percentage of your solar system's cost.

The ITC applies to solar systems installed after January 1, 2006 on a primary or secondary residence that you own in the United States. The credit initially covered 30% of the total cost — for panels, accessories, equipment and labor — although it may range from 26-30%, depending on when your solar project was undertaken. There is no cap on the amount you can claim.

Speaking with your local Ceres solar panel installation expert is the best way to learn more about how the ITC may apply to you.

In August 2022, the ITC (now called the Clean Energy Credit) was expanded and extended by the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act. For solar system installations that begin after January 1, 2022 and are completed by the end of 2032, homeowners may be eligible for a credit for 30% of the total cost. The percentage will then decrease annually until the Clean Energy Credit ends in 2035. Starting in 2023, it will also be easier to obtain credits for energy storage systems under the new laws.

More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. Your local Ceres solar panel installers are the best people to answer your questions regarding the new Clean Energy Credit and how it will apply to you.

State & Local Solar Incentives

Some solar incentives are often also offered at the local or state level. Similar to federal incentives, these may include tax credits, rebates and more. These incentives may be provided by your county or municipality, or by the California government. Certain incentives are ongoing, while others are available for a limited time.

Next Steps for Installing Solar in Ceres

Solar incentives might be offered by the federal government, the California government or your local utility company. The growing number of available incentives has helped nationwide use of solar energy increase greatly in the last 15 years. We suggest talking to your local Ceres solar installation company to learn more about these incentives and to make sure that you're getting all of the money you can for your solar system.

Best National Provider

SunPower

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  • Most efficient panels on the market
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  • Customer service varies by local dealer

Best Regional Coverage

Momentum Solar

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  • Great warranty coverage
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Best Technology

Tesla Energy

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  • Price-match guarantee
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  • Best solar battery on the market
  • Some reported issues with customer service
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

EcoWatch's Ceres, CA Solar Incentives FAQs

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

While we recommend talking to your local solar installer and/or tax professional to better understand what solar incentives apply to you, many can be claimed on a second home, as long as it is in the United States and owned by you. There may be additional incentives available specifically for commercial properties, depending on the details.

I already have solar panels. Does my system qualify for any incentives?

If your solar panels were installed after January 1, 2022, you may qualify for the recently increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. If your system was installed 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 Ceres solar installer, can help you understand what incentives you qualify for.

How much will solar panels save me annually on my electric bill in Ceres?

Once you add solar panels to your Ceres home, you can anticipate savings of around $1,677.36 per year, or around $31,869.78 over 20 years.

What are some environmental benefits of adding solar panels to my house?

Solar energy is a renewable energy source — by changing where you get your energy, you can help lessen the strain on our planet's resources. You can also lower the CO2 emissions from your home by 250 pounds annually, or around 5,000 pounds over 20 years.

How long until the federal solar tax credit ends?

The federal solar tax credit, formerly known as the ITC and now named the Clean Energy Credit, is set to end January 1, 2035. The current 30% credit will end in 2032, replaced by a 26% credit in 2033 and a 22% credit in 2034.

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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