2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Torrance, CA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Torrance.
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 May 04, 2023
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What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Torrance?
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 are intended to make renewable energy usage more affordable via financial incentives to help people install solar panels on their homes. Different kinds of incentives, such as discounts, cash back or monthly utility bill credits, may be available to you. Some incentives may be offered by the state of California, by your utility company or by county or municipality, while other incentives are federal. Some solar incentives you might qualify for are:
- Tax Exemptions: Tax exemptions can come in two forms. The first is sales tax exemption, applied at the time you purchase your solar panels. The second is property tax exemption. This allows you to ignore the value added by your solar system when paying property tax on your house.
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and other performance-based incentives might be available to you if the solar system on your home produces more than a specified (typically small) amount of electricity. This category of incentives is normally handled at the state level. You can sell the SRECs you receive to your utility company or other buyers, and the money you receive in return is typically considered part of your taxable income.
- Tax Credits: Tax credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions (not deductions) in how much income tax you owe the federal government.
- Rebates: Rebates, or partial refunds after a purchase, are normally given prior to any solar tax credits being calculated. These rebates may be provided by your local utility company, by your state or by your county.
- Net Metering: Net metering becomes relevant once your solar system is up and running. If you have a net metering agreement in place with your Torrance utility company, the company will subtract the value of the excess energy produced by your solar system from your utility bill each month. In some areas, this credit is dollar-for-dollar, while in others you may receive a refund equivalent to a percentage of the value.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal incentives are the kind of incentives that you are most likely to have heard of. The Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC, is likely the most commonly known federal solar incentive. The ITC provides a tax credit for a set percentage of your solar system's cost.
The ITC applies towards solar systems installed after January 1, 2006 and allows you to deduct from your taxes a percentage of the total cost of solar panels, accessories, labor and equipment. You can claim this credit for solar panels installed on a primary or secondary residence in the United States that you own. The original claim amount was 30% of the total cost, although depending on when the project was completed, your credit may range from 26-30%. There is no maximum amount you can claim.
Contacting your local Torrance solar panel installation expert is the best way to learn more about how the ITC may apply to you.
The ITC has been renewed and expanded following the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act in August 2022. It's also now called the Clean Energy Credit. The Clean Energy Credit re-raises the credit up to 30% for solar installations undertaken between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2032. After 2032, the percentage will be reduced slightly each year until the program expires in 2035. Beginning in 2023, it will also be easier to claim credits for energy storage systems under this new program.
More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. To best understand how the new Clean Energy Credit might apply to you, speak with your local Torrance solar installers.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Some solar incentives are often also provided by state and local governments. Similar to federal incentives, these might include rebates, tax credits and more. Certain incentives are ongoing, while others are offered for only a limited time. Your local solar incentives may come from the California government, or from your specific county or municipality.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Torrance
Solar incentives can be provided by the California government, the federal government or your local utility company. The large number of available solar incentives has helped nationwide use of solar energy increase greatly in the last 15 years. It is a good idea to talk to your local Torrance solar installer for more information about these incentives and to be sure that you're getting all of the money you can for your solar panels.
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EcoWatch's Torrance, CA Solar Incentives FAQs
What if I add a solar system to a vacation home, rental property or commercial property? Can I still qualify for incentives?
Many solar incentives apply to a property you own that is located within the United States, and most secondary residences will fall under this distinction. There may be other solar incentives available for commercial properties, depending on the details. We recommend reaching out to your local solar installer and/or tax professional to best understand what incentives will apply to your specific situation.
I already have solar panels installed. Does my system qualify for any incentives?
If your solar panels were 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 year it was installed. Reaching out to the company that installed your system, or any local Torrance solar installer, can help you learn more about what incentives you can apply for.
How much can I save annually on my electric bill if I add solar panels to my Torrance home?
Typically, Torrance homeowners who install solar panels save approximately $1,340.69 per year, or approximately $25,473.16 over 20 years after making the switch.
Can I receive incentives both towards the initial cost of solar panels, and later as reimbursement?
Yes, you can claim both tax credits and rebates towards the cost of your solar panels. Depending on precisely which incentives you are receiving, they may apply in a different order. Make sure that you speak with your solar installer or a local tax professional to confirm that you are claiming the correct incentives and getting the most money possible.
Can I use multiple types of renewable energy to power my home?
You can power your home with multiple types of renewable energy, or a combination of renewable and non-renewable energy. Be sure to talk through your plan with your local Torrance solar installer. They can help you with the plan for your project and educate you on the various incentives that you will or won't 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.