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

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

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 Clayton 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 Clayton?

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/


The term "solar incentives" generally refers to financial incentives that are in place to encourage people to use renewable energy by making solar panels more affordable. You might be eligible for several kinds of incentives, such as discounts, cash back or monthly utility bill credits, depending on your situation. Certain 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:

  • Tax Exemptions: Sales tax exemptions go into effect at the point of sale for your solar system. Property tax exemptions let you ignore the value that your solar panels add when you calculate the amount of property tax you need to pay on your home.
  • Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): In general, solar systems that produce over a threshold (normally small) amount of electricity can qualify for SRECs or similar performance-based incentives. SRECs and similar incentives are typically offered at the state level. When you receive an SREC, you can sell it to your utility company or another buyer, and the money you receive is normally considered part of your taxable income.
  • Rebates: Rebates, or partial refunds after a purchase, are typically given before any solar tax credits are calculated. Rebates might be offered by your local utility company, by your state or by your county.
  • Net Metering: You can sign a net metering contract with your Clayton utility company. This agreement may apply to all or a percentage of the excess electricity your solar panels generate. They will then deduct this value from your utility bill each month.
  • Tax Credits: Tax credits reduce, dollar-for-dollar, the total amount of tax you owe the government. These differ from tax deductions.

Federal Solar Incentives

When you think about solar incentives, you likely think of federal incentives first. You may have heard of the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC. This is a tax credit that reduces your taxes by a specified percentage of the money you spend on your solar system.

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

To best understand how the ITC could apply to you, call your local Clayton solar panel installer and ask for more information.

In August 2022, the Inflation Reduction Act made revisions to the ITC, now titled 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. The amount will then decrease slightly on a yearly basis until the end of the current program. Beginning in 2023, it will also be easier to get credits for energy storage systems with the new act.

More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. Your local Clayton solar panel installer can answer your questions and explain how the new Clean Energy Credit may apply to you.

State & Local Solar Incentives

Rebates, tax credits and more can be claimed at multiple levels. On top of federal solar incentives, there are often state and local ones as well. Incentives might be offered by the state of California, or by your county or municipality. Some incentives may be available for only a limited time, while others are ongoing.

Next Steps for Installing Solar in Clayton

Solar incentives might be provided by your local utlity company, the California government or the federal government. The large number of solar incentives available has helped nationwide use of solar energy increase greatly in the last 15 years. We suggest talking to your local Clayton solar installation company for more information about these incentives and to ensure that you're getting the most money possible for your solar system.

Best National Provider

SunPower

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  • Most efficient panels on the market
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Best Regional Coverage

Momentum Solar

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  • Great warranty coverage
  • Representatives are experts on local policies
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Best Technology

Tesla Energy

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  • 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 Clayton, CA Solar Incentives FAQs

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

While we recommend talking to your local solar installer and/or tax professional to fully understand what solar incentives apply to you, many incentives apply to a second home, provided that it is in the United States and owned by you. There may be other incentives available for commercial properties specifically, depending on the specifics.

If my house already has solar panels, can I still claim incentives?

An excellent idea would be to talk to a representative from the company that installed your system — or get in touch with a local Clayton solar installer — to clarify which incentives you might qualify for. If your system was installed after January 1, 2022, you likely qualify for the recently increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. Solar systems installed between 2006 and 2021 may qualify for a tax credit of 26-30%.

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

When you add solar panels to your Clayton home, you can expect to save approximately $1,729.84 per year, or approximately $32,866.94 over the next 20 years.

If I switch my appliances out for ones that can use solar energy, are there any incentives I can claim?

Under the new Inflation Reduction Act, there are a number 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 a combination of multiple types of renewable energy to power my home?

Yes, you can use multiple types of renewable energy to power your home, such as a combination of solar and wind power. You can also use both renewable energy sources and a non-renewable backup source of energy. Be sure to discuss your proposed plan with your local Clayton solar installation expert, to make sure you know what you'll need and what incentives 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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