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

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

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 Colton 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 Colton?

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 phrase "solar incentives" refers to financial incentives put in place by solar companies and the government to encourage the adoption and use renewable energy by making the installation and use of solar panels more affordable. Incentives could include things like discounts, cash back or credit towards your monthly utility bill. Some incentives are offered federally, while others are handled by the California government or by your utility company, county or municipality. Some solar incentives you might qualify for are:

  • Tax Exemptions: Your solar panel system might qualify for both sales tax and property tax exemptions. Sales tax exemptions come into effect at the time of purchase. Property tax exemptions allow you to ignore the value added by your solar panels when calculating property taxes on your home.
  • Tax Credits: Tax credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions that lower the amount of income tax you owe the government. (This is different from a tax deduction.)
  • Net Metering: Don't forget to speak with your Colton utility company about signing a net metering agreement. This will allow you to get a credit towards your utility bill every month for the value of excess energy your solar panels generate. You might receive either a dollar-for-dollar credit or a percentage of the value.
  • Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs are credits that can be sold to your utility company (or other buyers) for cash that is generally considered part of your taxable income. In most cases, a certain (small) threshold of energy production must be met before your solar system can earn SRECs or other performance-based incentives. Incentives like these are generally handled by your state government.
  • Rebates: Solar rebates might be offered by your local utility company, or by your state or county. These rebates are essentially partial refunds that are applied after your purchase of solar panels and before tax credits are calculated.

Federal Solar Incentives

When you think about solar incentives, you likely think of federal incentives first. An incentive that most people are likely to be familiar with is the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC). The ITC is a tax credit for a certain percentage of the cost of your solar system.

The ITC initially applied to 30% of the total cost of installing solar panels, and has fluctuated slightly over the years between 26-30%. The percentage you qualify for will depend on when your solar system was installed. The total cost of installation includes the panels themselves as well as the cost of accessories, labor and equipment. There is no maximum amount you can claim. The ITC applies to solar panels installed after January 1, 2006 on your primary or secondary residence. The residence must be owned by you and in the United States.

Your local Colton solar panel installer can give you more information about the ITC and how it applies to your situation.

The Inflation Reduction Act, passed in August 2022, expanded and extended the ITC (as well as renaming it to the Clean Energy Credit). Homeowners can now qualify for a credit equal to 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. The percentage will then begin to decrease on a yearly basis until the Clean Energy Credit ends in 2035. The expansion to the program also makes credits for energy storage systems even easier to claim, beginning in 2023.

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

State & Local Solar Incentives

Tax credits, rebates and more can be claimed at multiple levels. On top of federal solar incentives, there are often state and local ones, too. Incentives may be given by the state of California, or by your county or municipality. Certain incentives are available for only a limited time, while others are ongoing.

Next Steps for Installing Solar in Colton

Nationwide solar energy use has increased enormously in the last 15 years, in part thanks to the increase in availability of solar incentives. You may get these incentives from the California government, the federal government or your local utility company. Speak with your local solar panel installation expert today to discover more about the various programs and to save as much money as possible on solar panels for your Colton home.

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EcoWatch's Colton, CA Solar Incentives FAQs

How do I learn if I qualify for specific solar incentives?

It's a good idea to talk to your local Colton solar installer to get an understanding of which incentives your project will qualify for. Usually, solar incentives apply to new solar panel systems installed on property you own (in the U.S.) within a specified date range. Some incentives, such as those offered by the government of California, might have other requirements.

My home already has solar panels installed. Are there any incentives that I qualify for?

If your solar system was 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 exact installation date. Talking to the company that installed your system, or any local Colton solar installer, can help you learn what incentives you can apply for.

Who installs solar panels near me?

To find the best solar panel installer in your area, check out our guide to Colton's best solar panel companies.

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

You can decrease your carbon footprint by 250 pounds of CO2 annually by switching to solar panels. This adds up to roughly 5,000 pounds over 20 years. Solar is also a renewable energy source, meaning that making the switch reduces the drain on our planet's resources.

Can I receive 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 your solar panels. Depending on precisely which incentives you are applying for, they may apply in a different order. Be sure to speak with your solar installer or a local tax professional to confirm that you are claiming incentives correctly and that you're getting the most money possible.

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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