2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Hickory, NC - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Hickory.
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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What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Hickory?
Duke Energy - NC Solar Rebate Program
Property Tax Abatement for Solar Electric Systems
All other systems: 80% of the appraised value
Active Solar Heating and Cooling Systems Exemption
EnergyUnited (Electric) Residential Energy Efficiency Program
Heat Pumps (16 SEER): $300/unit
Duke Energy (Electric) - Residential Energy Efficiency Rebate Program
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
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
Local Option - Green Building Incentives
Catawba County - Green Construction Permitting Incentive Program
Existing structures installing geothermal heat pumps, PV, solar water heating, or gray/rain water collection: 50% rebate
Plan review for commercial buildings seeking LEED certification, Energy Star, and/or NC HealthyBuilt Homes: 50% rebate
Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
Solar incentives are meant to help mitigate the cost of installing a solar panel system on your home. This category of financial incentives is in place to encourage more people to switch to renewable energy. Various types of incentives, including discounts, cash back or credit towards your monthly utility bill, might be available to you. Some incentives may be provided via the North Carolina government, by your utility company or by county or municipality, while other incentives are federal. Types of solar incentives might include:
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs can be sold to your utility company (or other buyers) for cash that typically becomes part of your taxable income. In most cases, there is a small threshold of energy production to meet before your solar system qualifies for SRECs or similar performance-based incentives. These kinds of incentives are generally handled at the state level.
- Net Metering: You can sign a net metering agreement with your Hickory utility company. This agreement may apply to all or a percentage of the excess electricity your solar panels generate. They will then subtract this value from your utility bill each month.
- Tax Exemptions: Sales tax exemptions are applied at the point of sale for your solar panels. Property tax exemptions allow you to ignore the value that your solar panels add when you calculate the amount of property tax you need to pay.
- Rebates: Solar rebates can be provided by your local utility company, or by your county or state. These rebates are essentially partial refunds that are applied after your purchase of a solar system and before tax credits are calculated.
- Tax Credits: Different from tax deductions, tax credits reduce, dollar-for-dollar, the amount of income tax that you owe the government.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal solar incentives are probably the first thing that you think of when you think about solar incentives. A federal incentive many people are probably familiar with is the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC). This incentive is a tax credit for a given percentage of your solar system's cost.
The ITC can be applied to solar systems installed after January 1, 2006 and under this program you can deduct from your taxes a percentage of the total cost of solar panels, labor, equipment and accessories. You can claim this credit for a solar panel system installed on a primary or secondary residence in the United States that you own. The original claim amount was 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 Hickory solar panel installation expert is the best way to understand how the ITC could 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 Clean Energy Credit re-raises the credit up to 30% for solar installations undertaken between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2032. After this, the percentage will be reduced slightly each year until the program expires in 2035. The expansion to the program also makes credits for energy storage systems even easier to claim, beginning in 2023.
More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. Your local Hickory solar panel installation expert is the best person to answer your questions regarding the new Clean Energy Credit and how it may apply to you.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Federal solar incentives are not your only option; rebates, tax credits and more are often offered at the state and local level. These incentives might be distributed by the North Carolina government, or by your county or municipality. Some incentives may be available for a limited time, while others are ongoing.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Hickory
You can receive solar incentives from the North Carolina government and the federal government, as well as from your local utility company. The increased availability of solar initiatives over the last 15 years has helped increase nationwide solar energy use enormously. Speaking with your local Hickory solar panel installation company is the best first step towards getting the most money possible when you switch to solar energy.
EcoWatch's Hickory, NC Solar Incentives FAQs
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