2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Boston, MA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Boston.
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 Boston solar installers to see how much you can save.
Please enter a valid 5-digit zip code!
Why you can trust EcoWatch
What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Boston?
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 help mitigate the cost of installing solar panels on your home. This category of financial incentives is designed to encourage more people to make the switch to renewable energy. These incentives may include upfront discounts, cash back or credit towards your monthly utility bill. Some incentives are provided by the federal government, some by the state of Massachusetts and some by your utility company, county or municipality. Some solar incentives you might qualify for are:
- Rebates: Solar rebates might be provided by your local utility company, or by your county or state. These rebates are essentially partial refunds that are applied after your purchase of a solar system and before tax credits are calculated.
- Net Metering: You can sign a net metering agreement with your Boston utility company, that may apply to all or a percentage of the excess electricity that is generated by your solar panels. They will then deduct this value from your monthly utility bill.
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and other performance-based incentives may be available to you if your solar system produces more than a specified (generally small) amount of electricity. These types of incentives are 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 usually considered part of your taxable income.
- Tax Exemptions: Your solar panels could qualify for exemptions on both sales and property tax. Sales tax exemptions come into effect at the time of purchase. Property tax exemptions allow you to exclude the added value of the solar panels when you are calculating property taxes on your home.
- Tax Credits: Unlike tax deductions, tax credits reduce, dollar-for-dollar, the amount of income tax that you owe the federal government.
Federal Solar Incentives
When people think of solar incentives, federal incentives might be the first thing that comes to mind. The Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC, is probably the most well-known federal solar incentive. The ITC offers a tax credit for a specific percentage of the cost of your solar system.
The ITC can be applied to the total cost of installing solar panels, including the panels themselves as well as labor, accessories and equipment. This credit can be claimed for panels installed after January 1, 2006 on a primary or secondary residence located in the United States that you own. Originally set at 30% of total costs, the credit has fluctuated over time, and you may qualify for different amounts depending on when your project was completed. There is no maximum claim amount.
Your local Boston solar panel installer can give you more information about the ITC and how it may apply to your situation.
In August 2022, the Inflation Reduction Act expanded and extended the ITC, now titled the Clean Energy Credit. The new Clean Energy Credit extends until 2035. Homeowners can now apply for a 30% credit for solar systems that began installation on or after January 1, 2022 and will be done by December 31, 2032. This credit will then be decreased by a few percentage points every year until its expiration. The expansion to the program also makes credits for energy storage systems even easier to claim, beginning in 2023.
More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. Your local Boston solar panel installer can answer any questions you have and explain how the new Clean Energy Credit applies to you.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Some solar incentives are often also offered at the local or state level. Similar to federal incentives, these might include rebates, tax credits and more. Incentives might be offered by your county or municipality, or by the state of Massachusetts. Some incentives are available for only a limited time, while others are ongoing.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Boston
Solar incentives might be offered by your local utility company, the federal government or the Massachusetts government. The large number of available solar incentives has helped nationwide use of solar energy increase greatly in the last 15 years. We suggest talking to your local Boston solar installation company for more information about these incentives and to be sure that you're getting the largest number possible for your solar system.
EcoWatch's Boston, MA Solar Incentives FAQs
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.