Nevada Solar Incentives (Rebates, Tax Credits & More in 2023)

In this guide to saving money on solar in Nevada using local solar incentives, you’ll learn:

  • What solar benefit programs are available in Nevada?
  • Do the solar perks in Nevada help bring down solar conversion costs?
  • What are the most valuable solar incentives to file for in Nevada?
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Do Nevada Solar Incentives Make It Affordable for Homeowners to Go Solar?

Yes, absolutely! Although the cost of converting to solar power in the area is above the national average, the incentives available from the state and federal government help make conversion more affordable and accessible.

The typical cost of a solar panel system in NV is $25,200, which is a few thousand dollars over the national average. This estimate is based on the per-watt cost in the area of around $2.52 and the average system size of 10 kilowatts (kW), which is required to offset the above-average energy needs in the state.1

Thankfully, the Silver State has a progressive Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) goal to produce 50% of its energy from clean sources by 2030.2 That goal has led to better incentives than most other states, which help to bring down the cost of converting to renewable energy by thousands of dollars in most cases.

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In the table below, we’ll include a list of all of the solar incentives available in your area. We’ll also provide estimated savings for each, which assume the average system size and energy bills for your area.

Solar Incentives in Nevada Incentive Type Description Occurrence Estimated Dollar Amount You Can Receive
Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) Federal This perk provides a credit to your income tax liability for 30% of your system cost One-time: The credit is assessed once when you file your taxes after installing your photovoltaic (PV) system. However, the credit can roll over for up to five years $7,560, on average
Nevada Energy (NV Energy) Storage Incentive Program State This is a perk that minimizes your electric bill if you use a time-of-use electric plan and have solar batteries installed in your home Ongoing: You’ll continue to see your electricity rates lowered for as long as you provide NV Energy access to your stored solar energy Varies based on your electricity rates, your battery capacity and more
Renewable Energy Systems Property Tax Exemption (for commercial customers only) State This perk waives property tax increases due to solar conversion for commercial solar customers only Ongoing: Eligible customers will continue to see savings on property tax bills for as long as their system holds value Varies based on system size and more
Net Metering Local This incentive credits you for all excess energy you generate and send to the grid. Your credits can pay down future bills to maximize your energy savings Ongoing: For 20 years following solar installation, your net energy metering credits will continue to accrue if production outpaces consumption Varies
Local Incentives Local Cash-back incentives and other benefit programs offered by local electric companies and municipalities Varies Varies

What Do Nevadans Need to Know About the Federal Solar Tax Credit?

The federal tax credit is a perk offered by the federal government, so it’s available to all Nevada residents. It guarantees you get a credit to your income taxes owed for the year you install your system, and the credit is currently equal to 30% of your entire equipment and installation cost.

Given the average local cost of converting to solar — around $25,200 — the typical credit sits at $7,560. That amount is credited to your tax liability for the year you convert to solar, and any unused credit can be pushed forward for up to five total tax years.

This credit was established in 2005 and was set to expire in 2024. The credit was scheduled to drop to 26% in 2022 and 22% in 2023 before disappearing altogether in 2024. However, the Inflation Reduction Act signed in 2022 pushed the credit for 2022 systems back up to 30% and modified the schedule as follows:

  • 30% for systems installed between 2022 and 2032
  • 26% for systems installed in 2033
  • 22% for systems installed in 2034
  • 0% for systems installed in 2035 and beyond

How to Claim the Federal ITC in Nevada

One of the best parts about the federal credit is the ease with which you can apply for it. It requires just a single form to be filled out and filed with your taxes. The steps to claim this amazing perk are listed below.

  • Step 2: Fill out the form. You’ll need some information about your system — like the size and total cost of solar — which you should be able to get from your solar company or installation documents. You’ll also need some basic information about the company that carried out the solar electric installation.
  • Step 3: File the completed form along with your taxes. You can include the document with your filing if you use a tax software like TurboTax, or you can follow the prompts regarding efficiency upgrades to fill out the form electronically.

EcoWatch’s Opinion on the Federal ITC in Nevada

We believe the federal credit is the most valuable incentive you can take. It provides an average potential value of over $7,500, is available to all taxpayers and takes just a few minutes of your time to file for.

The value you get for the time and energy invested is unmatched. Plus, if you owe enough on your taxes, you can get the entire value just a few months after going solar, which isn’t the case for perks like net energy metering.

While the federal credit is an outstanding benefit program, you should keep in mind that not every solar customer will be able to take the full credit amount. It only applies if you owe money in income taxes to the IRS. If you don’t expect to owe at least $1,500 per year in taxes over the next five years, then you’ll only be eligible for a partial credit.

What You Should Know About the NV Energy Storage Incentive Program in Nevada

This perk is similar to a solar rebate, but the amount you get back is determined by how much solar energy stored in your batteries you share with NV Energy during peak consumption hours. Basically, your stored energy helps the utility provider keep up with demand and reduce strain on the electric grid.

The rate you get per watt-hour you share depends on whether you’re on a time-of-use (TOU) energy plan or a non-TOU energy plan. The credit per watt-hour you share is up to $0.19 per watt-hour — or $190 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) — for TOU customers or up to $0.095 per watt-hour for non-TOU customers — or $95 per kWh.

The maximum incentive is capped at $3,000 for TOU customers and $1,500 for non-TOU customers.

It’s very difficult to say with any confidence what amount you’d be eligible for, as there are many factors to consider. Your energy plan matters, as do your solar battery storage capacity and the fluctuating demand in your area.

The likelihood is that, over time, you’d be able to meet the maximum credit of $3,000 for TOU customers or $1,500 if you’re a non-TOU customer. Of course, this depends heavily on your battery capacity.

How to Claim the Solar Storage Incentive in Nevada

Applying for this perk is straightforward, but there is a fee to do so, which is unfortunate. If you think it’s worth applying, you can follow the steps below.

  • Step 1: Head over to NV Energy’s web page for net energy metering, interconnection and storage incentive information.
  • Step 2: Create an online account if you don’t have one already.
  • Step 3:Fill out the application for the storage incentive. You’ll need information about your batteries, including the brand, total capacity, usable capacity and more.
  • Step 4: Pay the application fee. If your system capacity is below 10 kW, the fee is $130. If it’s above the average size of 10 kW, you’re looking at a $200 application fee.
  • Step 5: A representative from the power company will reach out to you after your application is confirmed with any additional steps you need to take.

EcoWatch’s Opinion on NV Energy’s Storage Incentive Program in Nevada

The storage incentive program is a great way to reduce the effective cost of including solar batteries with your panels. While it’s a decent way to save some money, it’s not our favorite program for a few reasons.

First, it’s not available to all residents. Only those who are serviced by NV Energy can take this perk. We’ve included it in the general incentives, though, because more than two-thirds of the state is serviced or serviceable by this power company, so most customers can take it.

Second, there’s an application fee, which is a drawback, and there’s no guarantee of any kind that you’ll see a financial benefit from this perk. Cash-back amounts are based on fluctuations in demand, so you may never see a substantial amount of money back after applying. Even if you do, it might take quite a long time to see a return.

What You Should Know About the Property Tax Exemption in Nevada

Normally, any improvements to a property that increase its value will drive up the property taxes as well. The Silver State ignores the value added by solar power systems when assessing property taxes, but only for commercial customers. This prevents commercial taxes from going up following solar conversion.

It’s possible that the state will, at some point, include this exemption for residential customers, which we would love to see.

How to Apply for the Property Tax Exemption in Nevada

Unfortunately, you cannot apply for this exemption as a residential solar customer. If you’re a commercial solar customer, you can simply install your solar energy system, and you’ll automatically get access to the perk. Your tax assessor will ignore any value added by your solar power system when assessing your property value for taxation.

EcoWatch’s Opinion on the Exemption for Property Taxes in Nevada

Property tax exemptions are outstanding perks in most cases, as they provide thousands of dollars in tax savings and are automatically applied when you convert to solar.

Unfortunately, this perk is not available for residential customers, which is a pretty major downside, in our opinion. We’d love to see this financial incentive applied to all solar customers in the state, but for now, this perk is relatively lackluster, in our opinion.

Net Energy Metering in Nevada

close up of dark solar panelsNet energy metering (NEM) is a billing policy that lets you take advantage of all solar production, even if you don’t use the power you’re generating. Through interconnection, it lets you bank energy credits for all overproduction. The energy you send to the grid earns you those credits, which can be used to reduce future bills and effective electricity rates.

NEM is mandated for all power companies in the state, including NV Energy, Valley Electric Association and more. The rate at which customers are credited for the excess energy they send to the grid is based on tiers. The state currently is at tier four, which is the last and least beneficial tier. Still, it provides 75% of the value of each kWh you send to the grid.

It’s tough to say how much NEM is likely to save you over time on your utility bills. However, the average lifetime savings for solar conversion in the state is around $18,319. Net energy metering is likely to help you achieve or even surpass these savings.

We should mention that net energy metering policies have been changing in many states, usually for the worse. Some customers are seeing rates drop, while others are seeing the policy go away altogether.

NEM has been a point of contention among local electric companies, the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada (PUCN) and electric customers in the state. It seems like the rate is not settled at 75% of the retail rate, but this could change with alterations to legislation in the future.

How to Enroll in Net Energy Metering in Nevada

Thankfully, enrolling in net metering is more or less automatic for many homeowners, as solar panel installation companies often enroll for you. You can follow the steps below to make sure you get access to this incentive.

  • Step 1: We suggest first calling your power company to confirm you’re eligible for interconnection. You might need a bidirectional meter installed, which your provider should offer to you at no cost.
  • Step 2: Choose a solar installer. We suggest screening companies in part by seeing which ones will apply to net energy metering for you. Reliable companies tend to offer this service automatically, so it’s a good thing to look for in a solar contractor.
  • Step 3: Have your solar energy system installed.
  • Step 4: Check your energy bills after installation to ensure that your credits are registering with your utility.

EcoWatch’s Opinion on Net Metering in Nevada

Net energy metering has historically been one of the most valuable incentives for solar customers according to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).3 In our opinion, even the below-retail rate you can get for excess energy in the state is a great option and one that is likely to save you quite a lot of money in the long run.

We’re a bit concerned about the future of NEM, given the policy’s tumultuous past in the state. For now, though, we believe it’s one of the most crucial perks to take advantage of, especially since it requires almost no effort on your part to apply and provides great savings in most cases.

Local Solar Incentives in Nevada

There are some additional perks available from local utility companies and other smaller entities throughout the state. We’ll list these below and explain how each can benefit you.

  • Southwest Gas Corporation (SW Gas) Residential Energy Efficiency Rebate Program: Customers of SW Gas can take cash-back perks for energy-efficient water heaters — up to $225 — and solar water heaters — up to $13 per therm.4
  • SW Gas Smarter Greener Better Solar Water Heating Program: This is another rebate option for residents installing solar water heaters. It provides cash-back perks of up to $3,500 or 50% of the installation cost for solar water heater installations.5
  • NV Energy Solar Thermal Heating Program: Customers of NV Energy can also take a cash-back incentive for water heaters. This option provides cash-back incentives up to $3,000 or 50% of the installation cost, whichever is lower.6

You can call your utility company for other efficiency perks, or you can check the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) for other options.

Which Tax Incentives Are The Best In Nevada?

Above, we’ve discussed all of the perks available for solar technology in the state, but not all of them provide the same value. Below, we’ll include a quick list of the perks we strongly recommend not missing out on.

The Federal Tax Credit

The federal credit is the single most crucial perk to take, in our opinion. It provides an average credit of over $7,500, which is the highest you’ll see from any incentive in the area. Provided you owe enough in taxes to take the full credit, the value cannot be beaten in the area.

Plus, applying for the credit is super simple and just takes a few minutes of your time. It’s also available to all residents regardless of location and utility company, which cannot be said about the other incentives available in the area.

Net Energy Metering

We also strongly recommend taking advantage of net energy metering. The policy is subject to change, as it has several times in the past, but for right now, the credit rate is set at 75% of the retail value of energy. This isn’t ideal, but it can still help push your all-in savings closer to that average $18,000 mark.

NEM is also available to all residents, thanks to the universal policy set by the PUC. This is especially beneficial in an area like Nevada, where energy consumption is above average and credits go a long way to saving your money over time.7

What’s The Near Term Outlook For More Incentives In Nevada?

As of this writing, there are no specific plans in place for new incentives to become available or for existing ones to change.

Since many states have been seeing negative changes to net metering policies, we’d expect this to be the first perk that did get negatively affected if one did. This wouldn’t be terribly surprising, as the policy has seen some changes already in the Silver State.

With that being said, the state’s RPS goal is still solid and calls for 50% clean energy by 2030. We’d be surprised if there were any major changes to any policies before that goal is met.

FAQ

We get lots of questions about incentives and how much they affect the cost of going solar from residents in your area. We’ll answer some of the questions we get asked most often below.

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Article author
Dan Simms is an experienced writer with a passion for renewable energy. As a solar and EV advocate, much of his work has focused on the potential of solar power and deregulated energy, but he also writes on related topics, like real estate and economics. In his free time — when he's not checking his own home's solar production — he enjoys outdoor activities like hiking, mountain biking, skiing and rock climbing.
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The EcoWatch Reviews team is your trusted source for sustainable home recommendations. We know it can be hard to find eco-friendly solutions to common homeowner headaches. We're here to help by providing honest, unbiased reviews of brands and services. Our reviews and rankings are never affected by revenue or partnerships.

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