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

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

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 Worcester 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

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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 Worcester?

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

MuniHELPS - Offered by 17 Utilities through the MMWEC

Incentive Type:
Rebate Program
Varies by utility

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 for individuals who install solar panels on their homes. Incentives may include things like discounts, cash back or monthly utility bill credits. Some incentives are handled federally, while others are offered by the Massachusetts government or your specific utility company, county or municipality. Categories of solar incentives include:

  • Net Metering: You may be able to sign a net metering agreement with your Worcester utility company. This agreement may apply to all or a percentage of the excess electricity your solar panels generate. Your utility company will then deduct this value from your utility bill each month.
  • Rebates: Solar companies may help you claim a rebate, or partial refund after purchase, for your solar system. States or counties will also offer limited-time rebates at various times. The value of a rebate will usually come off the total price before any tax credits are calculated.
  • Tax Exemptions: Sales tax exemptions are effective at the point of sale for your solar panels. Property tax exemptions allow you to exclude the value that your solar panels add when you calculate how much property tax you need to pay 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.
  • Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): In most cases, solar systems that produce more than a specified (usually small) amount of electricity will qualify for SRECs or other similar performance-based incentives. SRECs and similar incentives are typically offered at the state level. SRECs can be sold to your utility company or another buyer, and generally the money you make is normally considered part of your taxable income.

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SunPower

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  • Most efficient panels on the market
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  • Great warranty coverage
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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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  • Expansive service area
  • Many financing options
  • Some reported issues with customer service
  • Some reported issues with door-to-door sales

Federal Solar Incentives

Federal solar incentives are probably the first thing that you think of when thinking about solar incentives. One of the incentives that most people are likely familiar with is the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC). This is a tax credit for a certain percentage of your solar system's cost.

The ITC applies to solar systems installed after January 1, 2006, on a primary or secondary residence in the United States that you own. Originally, the tax credit was for 30% of the total cost – for panels, accessories, labor and equipment – although the percentage may range from 26-30%, depending on when your solar system was installed. There is no cap on the amount you can claim.

To more fully understand how the ITC will apply to you, contact your local Worcester solar panel installation expert and ask for more information.

In August 2022, the Inflation Reduction Act laid out new provisions for the ITC, now dubbed the Clean Energy Credit. The new Clean Energy Credit now runs until 2035. You can now apply for a 30% credit for solar systems that began installation after January 1, 2022, and are completed by the end of 2032. This credit will then be decreased by a few percentage points every year until the date of expiration. The expansion to the program also makes it easier to get credit for energy storage systems, starting in 2023.

More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. To better understand how the new Clean Energy Credit applies to you, speak with your local Worcester solar installation company.

State & Local Solar Incentives

Some solar incentives may be offered at the local or state level. Like with federal incentives, these could include rebates, tax credits and more. These solar incentives — which might be given by your county or municipality, or by the state of Massachusetts — could be offered on an ongoing basis, or for only a limited time.

Next Steps for Installing Solar in Worcester

Solar incentives can come from the federal government, the Massachusetts government or your local utility company. The variety of available solar incentives has facilitated the nationwide growth of solar energy use in the last 15 years. We recommend talking to your local Worcester solar installation company for more information about these incentives and to be sure that you're getting all the money you can for your solar panels.

EcoWatch's Worcester, MA Solar Incentives FAQs

How do I know if I qualify for certain solar incentives?

It's a good idea to talk to your local Worcester solar installer for a better understanding of which incentives your project may qualify for. Generally, solar incentives apply to new solar panel systems installed on a property you own (in the U.S.) within a specified date range. Some incentives, such as those offered by the government of Massachusetts, might have other requirements.

How much will a solar system save me annually on my electric bill in Worcester?

On average, Worcester homeowners who install solar panels save about $1,101.84 per year, or around $20,934.98 over 20 years after making the switch.

How long until the federal solar tax credit ends?

The Clean Energy Credit (previously called 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.

Can I use a combination of multiple types 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 wind and solar. You can also combine renewable energy generation with a non-renewable backup source of energy. Make sure that you discuss your plan with your local Worcester solar installation expert, to make sure you know what you'll need and what types of 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.

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