2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Saugus, MA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Saugus.
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 Saugus?
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)
MuniHELPS - Offered by 17 Utilities through the MMWEC
Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
Solar incentives are designed to make renewable energy usage more affordable through financial incentives for those who install solar panels on their homes. You may be eligible for various types of incentives, including discounts, cash back 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 solar incentives you might qualify for are:
- Rebates: A solar rebate is a partial refund after the purchase of your solar system. These could be offered by your local utility company, your state or your county. The cash back that you get from the rebates is normally applied before calculating tax credits.
- 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 and other performance-based incentives may be available to you if your solar system produces more than a specified (typically small) amount of electricity. Performance-based incentives are generally handled at the state level. You can sell your SRECs to your utility company or other buyers, and the money you receive in return is normally considered part of your taxable income.
- Net Metering: Net metering becomes relevant after your solar system is up and running. If you have a net metering agreement with your Saugus utility company, they will subtract the value of the excess energy your solar system produces from your utility bill each month. In some locations, this is a dollar-for-dollar credit, while in other areas you may receive a refund equivalent to a percentage of the value.
- Tax Exemptions: Sales tax exemptions are effective at the time of purchase for your solar system. Property tax exemptions allow you to ignore the added value of your solar system when you calculate the amount of property tax you need to pay.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal solar incentives are likely to be the first thing that you think of when thinking about solar incentives. A federal incentive many people are likely familiar with is the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC). The ITC is a tax credit for a specified percentage of your solar system's cost.
The ITC can be applied to solar panels installed after January 1, 2006 on a primary or secondary residence in the United States that you own. Initially, the credit applied to 30% of the total cost — for panels, labor, equipment and accessories — although that amount may range from 26-30%, depending on the installation date of your solar system. There is no cap on the claim amount.
To find out exactly how much the ITC could save you, talk to your local Saugus solar panel installer.
The Inflation Reduction Act, passed in August 2022, made some changes to the ITC (as well as retitling it the Clean Energy Credit). The Clean Energy Credit runs until 2035. Solar installation projects started after January 1, 2022 and completed by the end of 2032 may qualify for a 30% tax credit. The amount will be decreased slightly on a yearly basis until the current program ends. Beginning in 2023, it will also be easier to get credits for energy storage systems under this new program.
More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. The easiest way to understand how the new Clean Energy Credit might apply to you is to talk with your local Saugus solar panel company.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Tax credits, rebates and more can be claimed at multiple levels. Along with federal solar incentives, there are often state and local ones, too. The incentives — which might be provided by your county or municipality, or by the state of Massachusetts — could be offered for only a limited time, or on an ongoing basis.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Saugus
Nationwide solar energy use has gone up significantly in the past 15 years, in part due to the increase in availability of solar incentives. You can obtain these incentives from your local utility company, the Massachusetts government or the federal government. We suggest talking to your local Saugus solar installation expert to learn more about these incentives and to make sure that you're getting the most money possible for your solar system.
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EcoWatch's Saugus, MA Solar Incentives FAQs
My home already has solar panels installed. Are there any incentives that I qualify for?
Your best bet is to talk to the company that installed your solar system — or reach out to a local Saugus solar installer — to learn about which incentives you may qualify for. If your solar panels were installed after January 1, 2022, you likely qualify for the recently increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. Systems installed between 2006 and 2021 may qualify for a tax credit of 26-30%.
How much can I save on my electric bill annually if I install solar panels on my house in Saugus?
On average, homeowners in Saugus who install solar panels save around $1,136.30 per year, or around $21,589.70 over 20 years after making the switch.
What are some of the environmental benefits of switching to solar?
Solar energy is a renewable energy source — by switching where you get your energy, you can help reduce the strain on our planet's resources. A solar system can also reduce the CO2 emissions from your home by 200 pounds annually, or around 4,000 pounds over 20 years.
Can I receive incentives both towards the up-front cost of solar panels, and later as reimbursement?
The order in which incentives are applied might vary depending on which incentives you are eligible for but in most cases yes, you can claim multiple types of incentives for your solar project. Get in touch with your solar installer or a local tax professional to verify you are claiming all the incentives you are eligible for and applying them in the correct order.
Can I use both solar and another type of renewable energy to power my home?
Yes, you can utilize multiple types of renewable energy to power your home — for example, a combination of solar and wind power. You can also combine renewable energy generation with a backup source of non-renewable energy. Make sure that you discuss your plan with your local Saugus solar installation expert, to get an understanding of what will be needed and what incentives you will or won't 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.