2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Des Moines, IA - Tax Credits & Rebates

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

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 Des Moines solar installers to see how much you can save.

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Data Analysis: James Savino

Ranking Methodology: Karsten Neumeister

Updated March 14, 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 Des Moines?

Property Tax Exemption for Renewable Energy Systems

Incentive Type:
Property Tax Incentive
100% of value added by renewable system

Renewable Energy Equipment Exemption

Incentive Type:
Sales Tax Incentive
100% of sales tax

Solar Energy Systems Tax Credit (Personal)

Incentive Type:
Personal Tax Credit
50% of Federal ITC (15% for 2019 and earlier, 13% for 2020, 11% for 2021, 5% for 2022, 0% for 2023 and later).

Local Option - Special Assessment of Wind Energy Devices

Incentive Type:
Property Tax Incentive
Property valued at 0% of the net acquisition cost in the first assessment year, increasing annually by 5 percentage points to a maximum of 30% of the net acquisition cost in the 7th and succeeding years

Methane Gas Conversion Property Tax Exemption

Incentive Type:
Property Tax Incentive
100% exemption for 10 years

Geothermal Heat Pump Tax Credit

Incentive Type:
Personal Tax Credit
20% of the Federal Tax Credit, equivalent to 6% of the system cost

Energy Replacement Generation Tax Exemption

Incentive Type:
Corporate Tax Exemption
100% exemption for self-generators, landfill gas and wind
Reduced rate for large hydro
Learn more:

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" broadly refers to financial incentives implemented by the government and by solar companies to encourage people to use renewable energy by making solar panels more affordable. The incentives might include cash back, upfront discounts or monthly credits towards your utility bill. Some incentives are provided by the federal government, some by the Iowa government and some by your specific utility company, county or municipality. Some solar incentives you might qualify for are:

  • Tax Credits: Tax credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions (not deductions) in how much in taxes you owe the government.
  • Net Metering: Net metering is an incentive you can get once your solar panels are up and running. If you have a net metering agreement with your Des Moines utility company, they will subtract the value of the excess energy produced by your solar system from your monthly utility bill. In some locations, this credit is dollar-for-dollar, while in others you might receive a refund equivalent to a percentage of the value.
  • Tax Exemptions: Your solar system could qualify for exemptions on both sales and property tax. Sales tax exemptions are effective at the time of purchase. Property tax exemptions allow you to exclude the value that solar panels add when you are calculating property taxes on your house.
  • Rebates: Solar rebates might be provided by your county or state, or by your local utility company. These rebates work as partial refunds that are applied after you pay for solar panels and before tax credits are calculated.

Federal Solar Incentives

When thinking about solar incentives, federal incentives are likely the first thing that comes to mind. A federal incentive many people are likely to be familiar with is the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC). This incentive is a tax credit for a certain percentage of your solar system's cost.

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

To best understand how the ITC could apply to you, call your local Des Moines solar panel installer and request more information.

In August 2022, the ITC (now called the Clean Energy Credit) was expanded and extended by the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act. The Clean Energy Credit runs until 2035. Any solar installation project that is completed between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2032 may qualify for a 30% tax credit; this amount will decrease slightly each year until the current program ends. Starting in 2023, the expansion will also make it easier to get credit for energy storage systems.

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, reach out to your local Des Moines solar installation expert.

State & Local Solar Incentives

Some solar incentives are often also offered at the local or state level. Similar to federal incentives, these may include rebates, tax credits and more. The incentives — which may be given by the state of Iowa, or by your county or municipality — might be offered for only a limited time, or on an ongoing basis.

Next Steps for Installing Solar in Des Moines

Solar incentives might be offered by your local utlity company, the Iowa government or the federal government. The growing number of available incentives has facilitated the nationwide growth of solar energy use in the last 15 years. When you're ready to switch over to solar energy, calling your local Des Moines solar panel installation expert is an excellent place to start.

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 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

Best Warranty Coverage

Sunpro Solar

★★★★★
4.0

  • Industry-leading warranty coverage
  • Expansive service area
  • Some reported communication issues
  • No leases or PPAs

EcoWatch's Des Moines, IA Solar Incentives FAQs

How do I know if I qualify for different solar incentives?

It's a good idea to talk to your local Des Moines solar installer for a better understanding of which incentives your project may 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 provided at the level of the Iowa government, might have additional requirements.

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

You can decrease your carbon footprint by 450 pounds of CO2 a year when you install solar panels. This adds up to around 9,000 pounds over 20 years. In addition, solar power is a renewable energy source, meaning that switching your home over reduces the drain on our planet's resources.

I want to switch my appliances out for ones that are more energy-efficient. Are there any benefits I can get?

Under the new Inflation Reduction Act, there are several new financial incentives for making 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 apply for incentives both towards the up-front cost of solar panels, and later as reimbursement?

Yes, you can receive 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. Be sure to talk to your solar installer or a local tax professional to verify that you are claiming incentives correctly and getting the most money possible.

Can I use solar and another type of renewable energy in combination to power my home?

Yes, you can use multiple types of renewable energy to power your home, such as a combination of solar and geothermal. You can also use both renewable energy sources and a non-renewable backup source of energy. You should discuss your proposed plan with your local Des Moines solar panel installer, to make sure you know what you'll need and what incentives 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.

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