2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Mill Valley, CA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Mill Valley.
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
Why you can trust EcoWatch
What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Mill Valley?
Property Tax Exclusion for Solar Energy Systems and Solar Plus Storage System
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 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. Incentives can include things like discounts, cash back or credit towards your monthly utility bill. Some incentives are offered by the federal government, while others are offered by the California government or your specific utility company, county or municipality. Types of solar incentives might include:
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): In most cases, solar systems that produce over a threshold (generally small) amount of electricity qualify for SRECs or similar performance-based incentives. SRECs and similar incentives are typically offered by your state government. SRECs can be sold to your utility company or another buyer, and generally the money you make is normally considered part of your taxable income.
- Tax Credits: Tax credits reduce, dollar-for-dollar, how much income tax you owe the federal government. Tax credits are different from tax deductions.
- Net Metering: Make sure you speak with your Mill Valley utility company about signing a net metering contract. This will allow you to receive credit towards your monthly utility bill for the value of excess energy generated by your solar panels. You could receive either a dollar-for-dollar credit or a percentage of the value.
- Rebates: Solar companies may help you claim a rebate, or partial refund of your purchase, for your solar panels. States or counties will also sometimes offer limited-time rebates. Any rebates you receive will usually be deducted from your total price before tax credits are calculated.
- Tax Exemptions: These might come in the form of property tax exemptions, which allow you to exclude the value added by your solar panels when calculating the taxes you pay on your house. They may also include exemptions on sales tax at the time of purchase.
Federal Solar Incentives
When thinking about solar incentives, you likely think of federal incentives first. The solar incentive that you're most familiar with is probably the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC), which provides a credit on your taxes equal to a predetermined percentage of your solar system's cost.
The ITC applies to the total cost of solar system installation, including the panels themselves as well as accessories, equipment and labor. 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 claim amount.
To know exactly how much money the ITC could save you, speak with your local Mill Valley solar panel installer.
In August 2022, the ITC (now titled the Clean Energy Credit) was bolstered by the passing of the Inflation Reduction Act. Now, solar installation projects started after January 1, 2022 and completed by the end of 2032 may be eligible for a 30% tax credit. The amount of the credit will then see a slight annual decrease until the current Clean Energy Credit expires in 2035. Starting in 2023, the expansion to the program will also make it easier to get credit for energy storage systems.
Click here to learn more about the new Inflation Reduction Act. To better understand how the new Clean Energy Credit will apply to you, get in touch with your local Mill Valley solar installation expert.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Some solar incentives may be provided at the state and local level. Like with federal incentives, these could include tax credits, rebates and more. These incentives may be handled 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 Mill Valley
You can apply for and receive solar incentives from the federal government and the California government, as well as from your local utility company. The growing availability of solar initiatives in the past 15 years has helped increase nationwide solar energy use enormously. Speaking with your local Mill Valley solar panel installation company is the right first step towards getting all the incentives you qualify for when you switch to solar energy.
Best Regional Coverage
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EcoWatch's Mill Valley, CA Solar Incentives FAQs
Can I claim incentives for adding solar panels to a vacation home, rental property or commercial property?
Many solar incentives apply to a property located within the United States that you own, and most secondary residences fall under this distinction. There may be other solar incentives available for commercial properties, depending on the specifics. We recommend talking to your local solar installer and/or tax professional to best understand what incentives will apply to your specific situation.
How do I know if I qualify for certain solar incentives?
It's a good idea to talk to your local Mill Valley solar installer to get an understanding of which incentives your project may qualify for. Generally, solar incentives apply to new solar systems installed on property you own (in the U.S.) within a specified date range. Some incentives, like those provided at the level of the California government, might have additional requirements.
When does the federal solar tax credit end?
The federal solar tax credit, formerly called the ITC and now called the Clean Energy Credit, is scheduled 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 can use solar energy, are there any benefits that I can claim?
Under the new Inflation Reduction Act, there are several new financial incentives that are available when you make 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 qualify for 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 solar panels. Depending on precisely which incentives you are claiming, they may apply in a different order. Be sure to speak with your solar installer or a local tax professional to ensure 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.