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

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

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 Watertown Town solar installers to see how much you can save.

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Data Analysis: James Savino

Ranking Methodology: Karsten Neumeister

Updated February 03, 2024

Why you can trust EcoWatch

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 Watertown Town?

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

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 designed to make renewable energy usage more affordable through financial incentives to help people install solar panels on their homes. You might be eligible for different types of incentives, such as cash back, discounts or monthly utility bill credits, depending on your situation. Some 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:

  • Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and similar performance-based incentives might be available to you if the solar system on your home produces over a specified (generally small) amount of electricity. This category of incentives is typically handled by the state government. You can sell any SRECs you have to your utility company or other buyers, and the money you receive in return is typically considered part of your taxable income.
  • Tax Credits: Unlike tax deductions, tax credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions in the amount of income tax that you owe the government.
  • Tax Exemptions: These could come in the form of property tax exemptions, which would allow you to exclude the value added by your solar panels when calculating the taxes you pay on your house. You could also look for exemptions on sales tax at the time of purchase.
  • Net Metering: Net metering is an incentive you can get after your solar panels are up and running. If you've signed a net metering agreement with your Watertown Town utility company, the company will subtract the value of the excess energy produced by your solar system from your utility bill each month. In some places, this credit is dollar-for-dollar, while in others you may make back a percentage of the value.
  • Rebates: Rebates, or cash back after a purchase, are normally applied before any solar tax credits are calculated. These rebates can be given by your local utility company, by your state or by your county.

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Federal Solar Incentives

Federal incentives are the type 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 allows you to claim a tax credit for a set percentage of your solar system's cost.

The ITC applies towards solar systems installed after January 1, 2006, and allows you to deduct from your taxes a percentage of the total cost of solar panels, equipment, accessories and labor. You can claim this credit for a solar panel system installed on a primary or secondary residence in the United States that you own. Originally, you could claim 30% of the total cost, although certain projects may qualify for only 26%, depending on the details. There is no maximum amount you can claim.

Your local Watertown Town solar panel installer can offer more information about the ITC and how it might apply to your situation.

In August 2022, the Inflation Reduction Act laid out new provisions for the ITC, now dubbed the Clean Energy Credit. Now, solar installation projects begun after January 1, 2022, and finished by December 31, 2032, may be eligible for a 30% tax credit. The amount of the credit will then decrease slightly each year until the end of the current Clean Energy Credit in 2035. Beginning in 2023, it will also be easier to obtain credits for energy storage systems under the new laws.

More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. To best understand how the new Clean Energy Credit applies to you, talk to your local Watertown Town solar installation company.

State & Local Solar Incentives

There are often state solar incentives available in addition to federal ones. Tax credits, rebates and more may be available at a more local level. Some incentives are offered for only a limited time, while others are ongoing. Local solar incentives might come from your county or municipality, or from the Massachusetts government.

Next Steps for Installing Solar in Watertown Town

Solar incentives may be offered by the Massachusetts government, the federal government or your local utility company. The variety of incentives available has contributed to a large increase in solar energy use in the last 15 years. Your local Watertown Town solar panel installation expert can help you learn more about which incentives you may qualify for, and get you started on the path to switching to renewable energy today.

EcoWatch's Watertown Town, MA Solar Incentives FAQs

How can I learn if I qualify for solar incentives?

Generally, solar incentives apply to:

  1. a new solar panel system
  2. installed on a property that you own
  3. within the U.S.
  4. within the date range specified by a particular incentive.

Specific incentives, including those given out by the Massachusetts government or by your county/municipality, might have additional qualifications. Talk to your local Watertown Town solar installer to learn more about what incentives your project will qualify for.

I already have solar panels installed. Does my system qualify for any incentives?

If your solar panels were installed after January 1, 2022, you may qualify for the recently increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. If you installed your system between 2006 and 2021, you might qualify for a tax credit between 26% and 30%, depending on the year it was installed. Reaching out to the company that installed your solar system, or any local Watertown Town solar installer, can help you understand what incentives you might want to apply for.

What are the best solar panel installation companies near me?

To learn about the top solar panel installation companies near you, take a look at our article on Watertown Town's top solar panel companies.

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 geothermal. You can also combine renewable energy generation with a non-renewable backup source of energy. Be sure to discuss your proposed plan with your local Watertown Town solar panel installer, so that you understand what you'll need and what types of incentives you may or may not 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.

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