2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Decatur, IL - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Decatur.
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 Decatur?
Special Assessment for Solar Energy Systems
Solar Renewable Energy Credits
Wabash Valley Power Association (28 Member Cooperatives) - Residential Energy Efficiency Program
Variable Speed Pool Pump: $250
Air-Source Heat Pump: $250 - $750
Geothermal Heat Pump: $1,500
Heat Pump Water Heater: $400/unit
HVAC: Varies depending on ZIP code. See program website
Corn Belt Energy Coop - Residential Energy Efficiency Rebate Program
Pool Pump: $250/unit
Air Source Heat Pump: $250 - $750/unit
Heat Pump Water Heater: $400/unit
Geothermal Heat Pump: $1,500/unit
Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
The phrase "solar incentives" refers to a range of financial incentives designed to make installing and using solar panels more affordable. This is done to encourage people to switch to renewable energy. Various kinds of incentives, including discounts, cash back or monthly utility bill credits, may be available to you. Certain incentives may be handled by the Illinois government, by your utility company or by county or municipality, while other incentives are federal. Categories of solar incentives include:
- Rebates: Rebates, or partial refunds after a purchase, are normally applied prior to any solar tax credits being calculated. Solar rebates might be given by your local utility company, by your county or by your state.
- Tax Credits: These credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions (not deductions) in how much in taxes you owe the government.
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs are credits that can be sold to your utility company (or other buyers) for cash that normally counts as part of your taxable income. In most cases, there is a small threshold of energy production to meet before your solar system can earn SRECs or similar performance-based incentives. SRECs and similar incentives are typically handled by your state government.
- Net Metering: Net metering factors in once your solar system is up and running. If you have in place a net metering agreement with your Decatur utility company, it will subtract the value of the excess energy produced by your solar system from your monthly utility bill. In some locations, this is a dollar-for-dollar credit, while in other areas you might make back a percentage of the value.
- Tax Exemptions: Your solar system might qualify for exemptions on both sales and property tax. Sales tax exemptions are applied at the time of purchase. Property tax exemptions allow you to ignore the value that solar panels add when you are calculating property taxes on your home.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal incentives are the type of incentives that you are most likely to have some familiarity with. 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 applies to the total cost of solar system installation, including the panels themselves as well as labor, accessories and equipment. 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 claim amount.
Wondering how the ITC applies to your specific situation? Contact your local Decatur solar panel installation expert to get more information.
In August 2022, the ITC (now referred to as the Clean Energy Credit) was bolstered by the passing of the Inflation Reduction Act. The Clean Energy Credit has increased the current credit up to 30% for solar installation projects started after January 1, 2022 and completed by the end of 2032. At this point, the credit percentage will decrease slightly each year until the end of the program in 2035. The expansion to the program also makes claiming credit for energy storage systems easier than ever before, beginning in 2023.
Click here to learn more about the new Inflation Reduction Act. The easiest way to understand how the new Clean Energy Credit applies to you is to reach out to your local Decatur solar panel company with your questions.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Some solar incentives are often also provided at the state and local level. Similar to federal incentives, these might include rebates, tax credits and more. Certain incentives are ongoing, while others might only be available for a limited time. They may be given by the Illinois government, or by your county or municipality.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Decatur
Solar incentives may come from your local utlity company, the Illinois government or the federal government. The variety of available incentives has helped nationwide use of solar energy increase greatly in the last 15 years. Your local Decatur solar panel installer can help you learn more about which incentives you should apply for, and get you on track to switch to renewable energy today.
Best Solar Financing
Blue Raven Solar
- Industry-leading in-house financing
- Competitive pricing
- Excellent reputation
- Doesn't offer solar batteries (coming 2022)
- 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 Decatur, IL Solar Incentives FAQs
Can I get any financial incentives when I add solar panels to a rental property, vacation home or commercial property?
While we recommend getting in touch with your local solar installer and/or tax professional to best understand what solar incentives apply to you, many incentives can be claimed on a second home, as long as it is in the United States and owned by you. There may be other incentives available specifically for commercial properties, depending on the details.
I already have solar panels. Are there any incentives that I qualify for?
Your best bet is to talk to someone from the company that installed your system — or reach out to a local Decatur solar installer — to clarify which incentives you may qualify for. If your system was installed after January 1, 2022, you likely qualify for the recently increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. Solar panels installed between 2006 and 2021 may qualify for a tax credit of 26-30%.
Who installs solar panel systems near me?
To find a top-rated solar panel installer, check out our guide to the top solar companies in Decatur.
Can I apply for 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 your solar panels. Depending on precisely which incentives you are applying for, they may apply in a different order. Be sure to speak with your solar installer or a local tax professional to verify that you are claiming incentives correctly and that you're getting the most money possible.
Can I use both solar and another type of renewable energy to power my home?
Yes, you can use multiple types of renewable energy to power your home — for example, a combination of geothermal and solar. You can also combine renewable energy generation with a backup source of non-renewable energy. Be sure to discuss the details of your plan with your local Decatur solar panel installer, to get an understanding of what will be needed and what incentives you may or may not 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.