2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Carrboro, NC - Tax Credits & Rebates

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

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 Carrboro solar installers to see how much you can save.

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Data Analysis: James Savino

Ranking Methodology: Karsten Neumeister

Updated March 14, 2023

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 Carrboro?

Duke Energy - NC Solar Rebate Program

Incentive Type:
Rebate Program
Residential: $0.60/W-AC
Nonresidential: $0.50/W-AC
Nonprofit: $0.75/W-AC

Property Tax Abatement for Solar Electric Systems

Incentive Type:
Property Tax Incentive
Residential systems: 100% of the appraised value
All other systems: 80% of the appraised value

Active Solar Heating and Cooling Systems Exemption

Incentive Type:
Property Tax Incentive
No more than conventional equipment

EnergyUnited (Electric) Residential Energy Efficiency Program

Incentive Type:
Rebate Program
Heat Pumps (15 SEER): $150/unit
Heat Pumps (16 SEER): $300/unit

Duke Energy (Electric) - Residential Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

Incentive Type:
Rebate Program
Central Air Conditioning or Heat Pump: $300 - $400 + $50 with added smart thermostat
Geothermal Heat Pump: $400 + $50 with added smart thermostat
Heat Pump Water Heater: $350
Attic Insulation or Attic Air Sealing: $250
Duct Sealing: $100
Variable-Speed Pool Pumps: $300

NC GreenPower Production Incentive

Incentive Type:
Performance-Based Incentive
Varies by technology and system size
PV larger than 5 kW: must enter bid process
Wind up to 10 kW: $0.09/kWh
Wind larger than 10 kW: must enter bid process

Local Option - Financing Program for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency

Incentive Type:
Loan Program

Local Option - Green Building Incentives

Incentive Type:
Green Building Incentive
Authorized by legislation for green buildings. Actual permit process to be determined by local government.

Duke Energy Progress - Residential Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

Incentive Type:
Rebate Program
Central A/C or Heat Pump: $300 - $400 + 50 with smart thermostat
Geothermal Heat Pumps: $400 + 50 with smart thermostat
Heat Pump Water Heater: $350
Attic Insulation & Air Sealing: $250
Duct Sealing: $100
Pool Pump: $300

Piedmont EMC - Residential Solar and Energy Efficiency Loan Program

Incentive Type:
Loan Program
$10,000

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 those who install solar panels on their homes. Different kinds of incentives, like discounts, cash back or monthly utility bill credits, may be available to you. Certain incentives may be offered by the North Carolina government, by your utility company or by county or municipality, while others are federal. Some broad categories of solar incentives include:

  • Tax Credits: Unlike tax deductions, tax credits reduce, dollar-for-dollar, the amount of income tax that you owe the federal government.
  • Net Metering: Net metering is an incentive you can get after your solar system is up and running. If you have a net metering agreement in place with your Carrboro utility company, they will subtract the value of the excess energy produced by your solar system from your monthly utility bill. In some places, this is a dollar-for-dollar credit, while in other areas you might make back a percentage of the value.
  • Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and other performance-based incentives might be available to you if you have a solar system that produces over a specified (usually small) amount of electricity. This category of incentives is generally handled at the state level. You can sell SRECs to your utility company or other buyers, and the money you make is usually considered part of your taxable income.
  • Tax Exemptions: Sales tax exemptions go into effect at the point of sale for your solar system. Property tax exemptions allow you to exclude the value that your solar panels add when you calculate the amount of property tax you need to pay.
  • Rebates: A rebate is a partial refund credited to your account after you've paid for your solar panels. These could be offered by your local utility company, your state or your county. The discount that rebates offer is normally applied to the price of solar panels before tax credits are calculated.

Federal Solar Incentives

Federal solar incentives are probably the first thing that you think of when thinking about solar incentives. The solar incentive that you're most familiar with is probably the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC), which provides a credit on your taxes equal to a certain percentage of your solar system's cost.

The ITC is applied to the total cost of solar system installation, including the panels themselves as well as labor, equipment and accessories. You can claim this credit for panels installed after January 1, 2006 on a primary or secondary residence located in the United States that you own. From its original value of 30% of the total cost, the credit has fluctuated slightly between 26-30%, and you may qualify for varying percentages depending on when your project was completed. There is no maximum amount you can claim.

Speaking with your local Carrboro solar panel installer is the best way to understand how the ITC could apply to your situation.

In August 2022, the Inflation Reduction Act made revisions to the ITC, now referred to as the Clean Energy Credit. The Clean Energy Credit lasts until 2035. Your solar installation project undertaken between 2022 and 2032 may qualify for a 30% tax credit; this amount will be decreased slightly on a yearly basis until the current program ends. Starting in 2023, the expansion to the program will also make credits for energy storage systems even easier to claim.

More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. To best understand how the new Clean Energy Credit will apply to you, reach out to your local Carrboro solar installation company.

State & Local Solar Incentives

Some solar incentives may be provided at the state and local level. As with federal incentives, these could include tax credits, rebates and more. Incentives may be provided by the state of North Carolina, or by your county or municipality. Some incentives might only be available for a limited time, while others are ongoing.

Next Steps for Installing Solar in Carrboro

You can apply for and receive solar incentives from the North Carolina government and the federal government, as well as from your local utility company. This increase in availability of solar initiatives in the past 15 years has helped greatly increase nationwide adoption of solar energy. It is a good idea to talk to your local Carrboro solar installation company for more information about these incentives and to ensure that you're getting all of the money you can for your solar system.

Best National Provider

SunPower

★★★★★
5.0

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

Best Solar Financing

Blue Raven Solar

★★★★★
4.5

  • Industry-leading in-house financing
  • Competitive pricing
  • Excellent reputation
  • Doesn't offer solar batteries (coming 2022)

Outstanding Regional Installer

Renu Energy Solutions

★★★★★
4.5

  • Excellent reputation
  • Many financing options
  • Representatives are experts on local policies
  • No leases or PPAs

EcoWatch's Carrboro, NC Solar Incentives FAQs

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

You should plan to talk to a representative from the company that installed your solar panels — or speak to a local Carrboro solar installer — to learn about which incentives you might 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. Solar 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 add solar panels to my Carrboro home?

Typically, homeowners in Carrboro who install solar panels save around $947.83 per year, or around $18,008.76 over 20 years after they make the switch.

How long until the federal solar tax credit ends?

The federal solar tax credit, formerly known as the ITC and now called the Clean Energy Credit, is set to end on January 1, 2035. The current 30% credit will end in 2032, replaced by a 26% credit in 2033 and a 22% credit in 2034.

Can I use multiple types of renewable energy to power my home?

Yes, you can utilize multiple types of renewable energy to power your home, such as a combination of wind and solar. You can also use both renewable energy sources and a backup source of non-renewable energy. Make sure that you discuss your proposed plan with your local Carrboro solar panel installer, to get an understanding of what will be needed 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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