2024 Solar Incentives Guide for Lowell, MA - Tax Credits & Rebates

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

You'll learn about:

  • Local & State Solar Incentives
  • Federal Tax Credits (Updated for 2024 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 Lowell solar installers to see how much you can save.

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Data Analysis: James Savino

Ranking Methodology: Karsten Neumeister

Updated April 21, 2024

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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 Lowell?

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

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 are intended to make renewable energy usage more affordable through financial incentives to help people install solar panels on their homes. These incentives may include upfront discounts, cash back or monthly credits towards your utility bill. Some incentives are given 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:

  • Tax Exemptions: Tax exemptions may come in two forms. First, there is sales tax exemption, which is applied when you purchase 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 home.
  • Net Metering: Be sure to speak to your Lowell utility company about signing a net metering agreement. This will allow you to get a credit towards your monthly utility bill for the value of excess energy generated by your solar panels. You may receive either a dollar-for-dollar credit or a percentage of the value.
  • Tax Credits: Tax credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions (not deductions) in how much income tax you owe the government.
  • Rebates: Solar rebates may be provided by your state or county, or by your local utility company. These rebates work as cash back that is applied after your purchase of solar panels and before tax credits are calculated.
  • Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and other performance-based incentives might be available to you if you have a solar system that produces more than a specified (generally small) amount of electricity. This category of incentives is usually handled at the state level. You can sell your SRECs to your utility company or other buyers, and the money you make is usually considered part of your taxable income.

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

★★★★★
4.0
  • Expansive service area
  • Many financing options
  • Some reported issues with customer service
  • Some reported issues with door-to-door sales

Best Social Impact

Palmetto Solar

★★★★★
4.0
  • Expansive service area
  • Makes charitable contributions
  • Certified B Corp
  • No leases or PPAs
  • Quality of installation may vary by location

Federal Solar Incentives

Federal incentives are the kind of incentives that you are most likely to have some familiarity with. The Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC, is the most well-known federal solar incentive. The ITC provides a tax credit for a specific percentage of your solar system's cost.

The ITC covers 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. You can receive this credit for a solar panel system installed on a primary or secondary residence that you own in the United States. Originally, you could claim 30% of the total cost, although depending on when the project was completed, your credit may range from 26-30%. There is no maximum claim amount.

Speaking with your local Lowell solar panel installation expert is the best way to learn more about how the ITC may apply 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. The new Clean Energy Credit is valid until 2035. Homeowners can now receive a 30% credit for solar systems installed between 2022 and 2032. This new credit will then see a slight annual decrease until the date of expiration. Starting in 2023, the expansion will also make credits for energy storage systems even easier to claim.

Click here to learn more about the new Inflation Reduction Act. The easiest way to fully understand how the new Clean Energy Credit applies to you is to reach out to your local Lowell solar panel company with your questions.

State & Local Solar Incentives

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

Next Steps for Installing Solar in Lowell

Solar energy use nationwide has gone up significantly in the past 15 years, in part due to the proliferation of solar incentives. You might receive these incentives from your local utility company, the federal government or the Massachusetts government. Talking to your local Lowell solar panel installation expert is the right first step towards getting the most money possible when you switch to solar energy.

EcoWatch's Lowell, MA Solar Incentives FAQs

How can I find out if I qualify for solar incentives?

Typically, solar incentives apply to:

  1. a new solar system
  2. installed on property you own
  3. within the U.S.
  4. between the dates specified by a particular incentive.

Specific incentives, including ones handled by the Massachusetts government or by your county/municipality, may have additional qualifications. Get in touch with your local Lowell solar installer to learn more about what incentives your project will qualify for.

My home already has solar panels. Are there any incentives that I qualify for?

An excellent idea would be to talk to the company that installed your system – or speak to a local Lowell solar installer — to learn about which incentives you might qualify for. If your system was 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%.

I want to change out my appliances for ones that are more energy-efficient. Are there any credits I can apply for?

The new Inflation Reduction Act provides several incentives meant to reward homeowners for making eco-friendly upgrades. Some of these incentives include rebates and tax credits for installing new electric appliances. You can find more details about these incentives here.

Can I apply for incentives both towards the initial cost of solar panels, and later as reimbursement?

The order that incentives will be applied in could vary depending on which incentives you receive but typically yes, you can receive multiple types of incentives for your solar project. Check with your solar installer or a local tax professional to ensure you are claiming all the incentives you qualify for and applying them in the correct order.

What if I am planning to add solar panels to a vacation home, rental property or commercial property? Do I still qualify for incentives?

Many solar incentives are intended to apply to a property located within the United States that you own; most secondary residences fall under this distinction. There may be other solar incentives available for commercial properties, depending on the specifics. We recommend getting in touch with your local solar installer and/or tax professional to best understand what incentives may apply to your specific situation.

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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