2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Great Barrington, MA - Tax Credits & Rebates

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

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 Great Barrington solar installers to see how much you can save.

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 Great Barrington?

Renewable Energy Property Tax Exemption

Incentive Type:
Property Tax Incentive
Solar energy systems used for heating or cooling: out-of-pocket expenditures by the owner for the components and labor
Wind, hydroelectric, geothermal, solar thermal, solar PV, and other solar energy systems: the assessed value of the system

Residential Renewable Energy Income Tax Credit

Incentive Type:
Personal Tax Credit

Renewable Energy Equipment Sales Tax Exemption

Incentive Type:
Sales Tax Incentive
100% exemption

Alternative Energy and Energy Conservation Patent Income Tax Deduction (Personal)

Incentive Type:
Industry Recruitment/Support
100% deduction

Cape Light Compact- Residential Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

Incentive Type:
Rebate Program
Appliances
Refrigerator and Freezer Recycling: $125
Electric Clothes Dryers: $50
Clothes Washer: $350
Dehumidifiers: $30
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

Home Electronics
Advanced Power Strips: Varies

Home Insulation
Limited Time Enhanced Incentive: 75%
Year-Round Tenant Incentive: 100%
Enhanced Residential Program: 100%

Lighting
LEDs: Varies

Home Energy Assessment: Free

Mass Save - HEAT Loan Program

Incentive Type:
Loan Program
$25,000 ($50,000 for some expanded HEAT offerings)

Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target (SMART) Program

Incentive Type:
Performance-Based Incentive
(Base compensation rate + compensation rate adders - greenfield subtractor) * total kWh generated - value of energy generated

Mass Solar Loan Program

Incentive Type:
Loan Program
Maximum required: $35,000; maximum possible: $60,000

Residential and Small-Scale Ground-Source Heat Pump Rebate Program

Incentive Type:
Rebate Program
New GSHP Rebate: $2,000 per ton with adders to eligible applicants
Retrofit Existing GSHP Rebate: varies with installation costs

Commonwealth Woodstove Change-Out Program

Incentive Type:
Rebate Program
Standard Residential:
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
Low-Income Residential:
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

Incentive Type:
PACE Financing
Financing amount locally determined; 20-year financing term

Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SREC-II)

Incentive Type:
Solar Renewable Energy Credit Program
Varies, depending on market supply and demand

Residential & Small-Scale Solar Hot Water Program

Incentive Type:
Rebate Program
Base rebate: $100 X number of collectors X SRCC rating (Category D, Mildly Cloudy Day)
Additional $500/system for metering installation
Additional $500/system for participants that have also installed solar PV on the same facility
80%-120% Income-Based Rebate Adder: $125 multiplier in formula (as opposed to $100)
Less than 80% of SMI Income-Based Rebate Adder: $150 multiplier in formula (as opposed to $100)
Non-Profit/Public Entity Adder: $150 in formula (as opposed to $100)
Affordable Housing Adder: $200 in formula (as opposed to $100)

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/


Solar incentives help mitigate the cost of installing a solar panel system on your home. This category of financial incentives is designed to encourage more people to make the switch to renewable energy. You might qualify for several kinds of incentives, such as cash back, discounts or credit towards your monthly utility bill, depending on your situation. Certain incentives come from your specific utility company, county or municipality, some from the state of Massachusetts and others from the federal government. Some broad categories of solar incentives include:

  • Tax Exemptions: Tax exemptions can come in one of two forms. First, there is sales tax exemption, which is applied at the time you purchase your solar panels. The second is property tax exemption, which allows you to ignore the value added by your solar system when paying property tax on your house.
  • Rebates: Rebates, or partial refunds after a purchase, are typically given prior to any solar tax credits being calculated. Rebates can be offered by your local utility company, by your county or by your state.
  • Net Metering: Net metering becomes relevant once your solar panels are up and running. If you have a net metering agreement with your Great Barrington utility company, the company will subtract the value of the excess energy your solar system produces from your monthly utility bill. In some places, this credit is dollar-for-dollar, while in others you may make back a percentage of the value.
  • Tax Credits: Tax credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions in the amount of income tax that you owe the federal government. (This is different from a tax deduction.)
  • 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 a predetermined threshold (normally 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 make is generally considered part of your taxable income.

Federal Solar Incentives

Federal solar incentives are probably the first thing that you think of when you think about solar incentives. One of the incentives many people are likely to be familiar with is the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC). This incentive is a tax credit for a predetermined percentage of the cost of your solar system.

The ITC can be credited towards the value of solar panels installed on your primary or secondary residence in the United States. The solar panels have to have been installed on a property you own after January 1, 2006 for you to be eligible for the credit. The ITC initially covered 30% of all installation costs (panels, accessories, labor and equipment), although this amount has fluctuated over the last few years between 26-30%. The installation date of your solar system will determine what percentage you are eligible for. There is no cap on the amount you can claim.

To better understand how the ITC will apply to your situation, reach out to your local Great Barrington solar panel installation expert and ask for more information.

The Inflation Reduction Act, passed in August 2022, made some changes to the ITC (as well as renaming it to the Clean Energy Credit). For solar systems installed between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2032, homeowners can receive a credit equal to 30% of the total cost. The percentage will then decrease annually until the Clean Energy Credit expires in 2035. The expansion to the program also makes it easier to get credit for energy storage systems, starting in 2023.

Click here to learn more about the new Inflation Reduction Act. Your local Great Barrington solar panel installer can answer your questions and explain how the new Clean Energy Credit may apply to you.

State & Local Solar Incentives

Not all solar incentives are federal; tax credits, rebates and more may be offered at the local or state level. Certain incentives are ongoing, while others are offered for only a limited time. Your local solar incentives may come from your county or municipality, or from the Massachusetts government.

Next Steps for Installing Solar in Great Barrington

The nationwide use of solar energy has gone up significantly in the past 15 years, in part thanks to the proliferation of solar incentives. You might receive these incentives from your local utility company, the federal government or the Massachusetts government. It is a good idea to talk to your local Great Barrington solar installation company to learn more about these incentives and to make sure that you're getting the most money possible for your solar panels.

Best National Provider

SunPower

★★★★★
5.0

  • Most efficient panels on the market
  • National coverage
  • Cradle to Cradle sustainability certification
  • Great warranty coverage
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  • Customer service varies by local dealer

Best Regional Coverage

Momentum Solar

★★★★★
4.5

  • Great warranty coverage
  • Representatives are experts on local policies
  • Concierge service ensures steady communication
  • Slightly limited service offerings

Best for Leasing

Sunrun

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4.0

  • Expansive service area
  • Many financing options
  • Some reported issues with customer service
  • Some reported issues with door-to-door sales

EcoWatch's Great Barrington, MA Solar Incentives FAQs

Can I receive any incentives when I add solar panels to a vacation home, rental property or commercial property?

While we recommend speaking with your local solar installer and/or tax professional to best understand what solar incentives apply to you, many incentives will apply to a second home, as long as it is in the United States and owned by you. There may be other incentives available for commercial properties specifically, depending on the details.

If my house already has solar panels, can I still claim incentives?

You should plan to talk to the company that installed your system — or get in touch with a local Great Barrington solar installer — to better understand which incentives you might qualify for. If your solar panels were installed after January 1, 2022, you likely qualify for the newly increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. Solar systems installed between 2006 and 2021 may qualify for a tax credit of 26-30%.

Who installs solar panels near me?

To find the best solar panel installer in your area, check out our guide to the best solar companies in Great Barrington.

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

Solar energy is renewable — by changing where you get your energy, you help reduce the strain on our planet's resources. Solar panels can also lower the CO2 emissions from your home by 200 pounds annually, or around 4,000 pounds over 20 years.

When does the federal solar tax credit end?

The Clean Energy Credit (formerly named the federal solar tax credit, or 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.

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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