2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Arlington, MA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Arlington.
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 Arlington?
Renewable Energy Property Tax Exemption
Wind, hydroelectric, geothermal, solar thermal, solar PV, and other solar energy systems: the assessed value of the system
Residential Renewable Energy Income Tax Credit
Renewable Energy Equipment Sales Tax Exemption
Alternative Energy and Energy Conservation Patent Income Tax Deduction (Personal)
Cape Light Compact- Residential Energy Efficiency Rebate Program
Refrigerator and Freezer Recycling: $125
Electric Clothes Dryers: $50
Clothes Washer: $350
Room Air Purifiers: $40
Room Air Conditioner: $40
Heating & Cooling
Oil Heating System: Up to $800
Propane Heating Equipment: Up to $2,300
Oil Water Heater: Up to $400
Propane Water Heater: Up to $800
Heat Pump Water Heater: Up to $600
Central AC/Heat Pump: Up to $250/ton
Mini-Split Heat Pump: Up to $250/ton
Programmable Thermostats: Up to $25
WiFi Thermostat: Up to $100
Solar Domestic Hot Water heater: $500 - $1,500
Advanced Power Strips: Varies
Limited Time Enhanced Incentive: 75%
Year-Round Tenant Incentive: 100%
Enhanced Residential Program: 100%
Home Energy Assessment: Free
Mass Save - HEAT Loan Program
Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target (SMART) Program
Mass Solar Loan Program
Residential and Small-Scale Ground-Source Heat Pump Rebate Program
Retrofit Existing GSHP Rebate: varies with installation costs
Commonwealth Woodstove Change-Out Program
Pellet Stove: $1,000 - $1,750
Catalytic Woodstove: $750 - $1,250
Non-Catalytic Woodstove: $500-$1,250
Fully Automated Wood Stove: $1,500 - $1,750
Pellet Stove: $2,500 - $3,250
Catalytic Woodstove: $2,250 - $2,750
Non-Catalytic Woodstove: $2,000-$2,750
Fully Automated Wood Stove: $2,750 - $3,250
Local Option - Energy Revolving Loan Fund
Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SREC-II)
Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
Solar incentives are meant to help mitigate the cost of installing solar panels on your home. Financial incentives like these are designed to encourage more people to switch to renewable energy. You might qualify for several types of incentives, including discounts, cash back or monthly utility bill credits, depending on your situation. Certain incentives come from your specific utility company, county or municipality, some from the Massachusetts government and others from the federal government. You might qualify for any of the following types of solar incentives:
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and other similar performance-based incentives are usually handled by your state government. Once your solar panel system meets the threshold (generally a small amount of energy production), you are eligible to receive SRECs that you can then sell to your utility company or other buyers. The money you receive from the sale is usually considered part of your taxable income.
- Tax Exemptions: Sales tax exemptions are effective at the point of sale for your solar panels. Property tax exemptions let you exclude the added value of your solar system when calculating the amount of property tax you need to pay.
- Tax Credits: Different from tax deductions, tax credits reduce, dollar-for-dollar, the amount of income tax that you owe the government.
- Net Metering: Net metering becomes relevant after your solar system is up and running. If you've signed a net metering agreement with your Arlington utility company, they will subtract the value of the excess energy your solar system produces 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.
- Rebates: Some solar companies will help you claim a rebate, or partial refund after purchase, for your solar panels. States or counties will also sometimes offer limited-time rebates. Any rebates you receive will usually be deducted from the total price before any tax credits are calculated.
Federal Solar Incentives
When you hear the term "solar incentives," federal incentives might be the first thing that comes to mind. The solar incentive that you may be most familiar with is 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 can be applied to 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, equipment and labor. This credit can apply towards solar panels installed on a primary or secondary residence in the United States that you own. The original amount you could claim was 30% of the total cost, although certain projects may qualify for only 26%, depending on the details. There is no maximum claim amount.
Your local Arlington solar panel installer can provide you with more information about the ITC and how it applies to your situation.
The ITC was both renewed and expanded by the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act in August 2022. It's also now called the Clean Energy Credit. Now, solar installation projects started after January 1, 2022 and completed by the end of 2032 might qualify for a 30% tax credit. The amount of the credit will then see a slight annual decrease until the end of the current Clean Energy Credit in 2035. Starting in 2023, the expansion to the program will also make claiming credit for energy storage systems easier than ever before.
More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. Your local Arlington solar panel installer can answer any questions you have and explain how the new Clean Energy Credit may apply to you.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Some solar incentives may be offered at the local or state level. Like with federal incentives, these can include rebates, tax credits and more. Certain incentives are ongoing, while others are offered for only a limited time. Local solar incentives might come from the Massachusetts government, or from your specific county or municipality.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Arlington
The variety of available solar incentives has enormously increased the use of solar power nationwide over the past 15 years. You can get solar incentives from your local utility company, the Massachusetts government or the federal government. When you're prepared to make the change to solar energy, calling your local Arlington solar panel installation expert is an excellent place to start.
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EcoWatch's Arlington, MA Solar Incentives FAQs
My home already has solar panels. Do I qualify for any incentives?
If your solar panels were installed after January 1, 2022, you may qualify for the newly increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. If you had your system installed between 2006 and 2021, you may qualify for a tax credit between 26% and 30%, depending on the exact installation date. Speaking with a representative from the company that installed your solar system, or any local Arlington solar installer, can help you learn more about what incentives you can apply for.
What are some environmental benefits of adding solar panels to my home?
You can reduce your carbon footprint by 200 pounds of CO2 annually by switching to solar panels. This adds up to around 4,000 pounds in 20 years. Solar is also a renewable energy source, meaning that making the switch reduces the drain on our planet's resources.
When does the federal solar tax credit end?
The Clean Energy Credit (formerly named the federal solar tax credit, or the ITC), is slated to end on January 1, 2035. Currently set at 30%, the credit will drop to 26% in 2033 and to 22% in 2034.
If I trade in my appliances for ones that can utilize solar energy, are there incentives that I can claim?
With the passage of the new Inflation Reduction Act, there are a number of 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 receive incentives both towards the initial cost of solar panels, and later as reimbursement?
The order in which incentives are applied could vary depending on which incentives you are eligible for but usually yes, you can claim multiple types of incentives for your solar project. Check with your solar installer or a local tax professional to confirm you are claiming all possible incentives 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.