2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Highland, CA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Highland.
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 March 14, 2023
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What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Highland?
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
Solar incentives mitigate the cost of installing solar panels on your home. These financial incentives are designed to encourage more homeowners to make the switch to renewable energy. Incentives can include things like discounts, cash back or credit on your utility bill each month. Some incentives are offered federally, while others are provided by the California government or your utility company, county or municipality. Some solar incentives you might qualify for are:
- Rebates: Your solar installer might help you claim a rebate, or partial refund of your purchase, for your solar system. States or counties will also offer limited-time rebates at various times. The value of a rebate will usually be deducted from your total price before tax credits are calculated.
- Net Metering: You can sign a net metering contract with your Highland utility company, that may apply to all or a percentage of the excess electricity that is generated by your solar panels. Your utility company will then subtract this value from your monthly utility bill.
- Tax Exemptions: Your solar panel system may qualify for both sales tax and property tax exemptions. Sales tax exemptions are applied at the time of purchase. Property tax exemptions let you ignore the value that solar panels add when calculating property taxes on your house.
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): Generally, solar systems that produce more than a specified (usually small) amount of electricity will qualify for SRECs or other performance-based incentives. SRECs and the like 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.
- Tax Credits: Tax credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions that lower the amount of income tax you owe the government. (A tax credit is different from a tax deduction.)
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal incentives are the kind of incentives that you are most likely to have some knowledge of. A federal incentive that most people are likely to be familiar with is the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC). This incentive is 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. Initially, the credit applied to 30% of the total cost — for panels, equipment, accessories and labor — although the percentage may range from 26-30%, depending on when your solar system was installed. There is no cap on the amount you can claim.
To more fully understand how the ITC will apply to your situation, get in touch with your local Highland solar panel installer and request more information.
In August 2022, the Inflation Reduction Act made revisions to the ITC, now called the Clean Energy Credit. For solar system installations that begin after January 1, 2022 and are completed by the end of 2032, homeowners can receive a credit equal to 30% of the total cost. This percentage will decrease annually after 2032 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. The easiest way to understand how the new Clean Energy Credit applies to you is to talk with your local Highland solar panel installers.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Rebates, tax credits and more can be provided at multiple levels. In addition to federal solar incentives, there are often state and local ones, too. Certain incentives are ongoing, while others are offered for only a limited time. Local solar incentives could come from your county or municipality, or from the California government.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Highland
There are many types of solar incentives: those given by local utility companies, those given by the California government and those given by the federal government, to name a few. The use of solar energy has increased tremendously in the last 15 years, thanks to these incentives. Your local Highland solar panel installation company can give you more information about which incentives you should apply for, and get you on track to switch to renewable energy today.
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EcoWatch's Highland, CA Solar Incentives FAQs
How can I find out if I qualify for different solar incentives?
It's best to speak with your local Highland solar installer for a better understanding of which incentives your project may qualify for. Generally, solar incentives apply to new solar systems installed on a property you own (in the U.S.) within a specified date range. Some incentives, such as those offered by the government of California, may have other requirements.
If I already have solar panels, can I still claim incentives?
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 you had your system installed between 2006 and 2021, you might qualify for a tax credit between 26% and 30%, depending on the date of installation. Speaking with a representative from the company that installed your system, or any local Highland solar installer, can help you learn more about what incentives you qualify for.
How much will a solar system save me on my electric bill in Highland annually?
After adding solar panels to your Highland home, you can anticipate savings of about $1,345.33 per year, or about $25,561.21 over 20 years.
How long until the federal solar tax credit ends?
The federal solar tax credit, formerly known as the ITC and now titled the Clean Energy Credit, is slated 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.
Can I claim incentives both towards the up-front cost of solar panels, and later as reimbursement?
The order in which incentives are applied may vary depending on which incentives you are eligible for but typically yes, you can claim multiple types of incentives for your solar project. Speak to your solar installer or a local tax professional to ensure you are claiming all the incentives you are eligible for and applying them in the correct order.
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.