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

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

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 Hayward 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 Hayward?

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 are meant to help mitigate the cost of installing a solar panel system on your home. These financial incentives are in place to encourage more Americans to convert their home partially or fully to renewable energy. You may qualify for several types of incentives, including discounts, cash back or credit towards your monthly utility bill, 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. Some broad categories of solar incentives include:

  • Tax Credits: Unlike tax deductions, tax credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions in the amount of income tax that you owe the federal government.
  • Net Metering: Be sure to talk to your Hayward utility company about signing a net metering agreement. This will allow you to get a credit towards your monthly utility bill for the value of excess energy your solar panels generate. You could receive either a dollar-for-dollar credit or a percentage of the value.
  • Tax Exemptions: Sales tax exemptions are effective at the time of purchase for your solar system. Property tax exemptions let you exclude the value that your solar panels add when you're calculating the amount of property tax you need to pay on your home.
  • Rebates: Rebates, or cash back after a purchase, are typically given before any solar tax credits are calculated. These rebates might be given by your local utility company, by your state or by your county.
  • Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs are credits that can be sold to your utility company (or other buyers) for money that typically becomes part of your taxable income. In most cases, you must meet a certain (small) threshold of energy production before your solar system can earn SRECs or similar performance-based incentives. Incentives like these are generally handled by your state government.

Federal Solar Incentives

When thinking about solar incentives, you probably think of federal incentives first. The solar incentive that you may be most familiar with is the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC), which gives you a credit on your taxes equal to a specified percentage of the cost of your solar system.

The ITC is applied to the total cost of installing a solar system, including the panels themselves as well as labor, equipment and accessories. This credit can be claimed for panels installed after January 1, 2006 on a primary or secondary residence that you own and that is located in the United States. 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 amount you can claim.

Your local Hayward solar panel installer can provide more information about the ITC and how it may apply to your situation.

The ITC was both renewed and expanded by the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act in August 2022. It's also now called the Clean Energy Credit. Under the new program, solar installation projects begun after January 1, 2022 and finished by December 31, 2032 might qualify for a 30% tax credit. The amount of the credit will then decrease slightly each year until the end of the current Clean Energy Credit in 2035. Starting in 2023, the program expansion will also make claiming credit for energy storage systems easier than ever before.

Click here to learn more about the new Inflation Reduction Act. To fully understand how the new Clean Energy Credit will apply to you, speak with your local Hayward solar installers.

State & Local Solar Incentives

Tax credits, rebates and more might be provided at multiple levels. In addition to federal solar incentives, there are often state and local ones as well. Incentives might be provided by your county or municipality, or by the state of California. Certain incentives are available for only a limited time, while others are ongoing.

Next Steps for Installing Solar in Hayward

Solar incentives might be provided by the California government, the federal government or your local utility company. The large number of solar incentives available has helped nationwide use of solar energy increase greatly in the last 15 years. Your local Hayward solar panel installation company can help you learn more about which incentives you should apply for, and get you on track to switch to renewable energy today.

Best National Provider

SunPower

★★★★★
5.0

  • Most efficient panels on the market
  • National coverage
  • Cradle to Cradle sustainability certification
  • Great warranty coverage
  • Expensive
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

Best Regional Coverage

Momentum Solar

★★★★★
4.5

  • Great warranty coverage
  • Representatives are experts on local policies
  • Concierge service ensures steady communication
  • Slightly limited service offerings

Best Technology

Tesla Energy

★★★★★
4.5

  • 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 Hayward, CA Solar Incentives FAQs

What are the best solar panel installation companies near me?

To discover the best solar panel installers near you, take a look at our article on Hayward's best solar panel companies.

What are the environmental benefits of switching to solar?

You can lower your carbon footprint by 250 pounds of CO2 a year when you install solar panels. This adds up to around 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 named the Clean Energy Credit, is set 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.

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

The new Inflation Reduction Act introduces a number of incentives meant to reward homeowners for making eco-friendly upgrades. Some of these incentives include rebates and tax credits for installing new electric appliances. You can find more details about these incentives here.

Can I receive incentives both towards the up-front cost of solar panels, and later as reimbursement?

Yes, you can claim both tax credits and rebates towards the cost of solar panels. Depending on precisely which incentives you are applying for, they may apply in a different order. Be sure to talk to your solar installer or a local tax professional to verify 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.

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