2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Bethlehem, NY - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Bethlehem.
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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By EcoWatch Local Advisors
Data Analysis: James Savino
Ranking Methodology: Karsten Neumeister
Updated May 04, 2023
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What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Bethlehem?
State of NY Commercial PACE Financing Program
Residential Solar Tax Credit
Refundable Clean Heating Fuel Tax Credit (Corporate)
NY-Sun Loan Program
Small Business and Not-for-Profit Organizations:
Participation Loans: up to $100,000 (at low interest rate)
On-Bill Recovery loans: $50,000 at 2%
Residential Wood Heating Fuel Exemption
Local Option - Solar Sales Tax Exemption
Solar Sales Tax Exemption
Local Option - Real Property Tax Exemption for Green Buildings
Energy Conservation Improvements Property Tax Exemption
Local Option - Solar, Wind & Biomass Energy Systems Exemption
NY-Sun PV Incentive Program (Residential, Low-Income, and Small Business)
Long Island Region: $0.00/W (MW blocks have been fully subscribed)
Con Edison Region: $0.30/W
Upstate Region: $0.35/W
Low-to-Moderate income customers: $0.80/W (up to 10 kW)
Small Commercial (Non-Residential): Long Island Region: $0.00/W (MW blocks have been fully subscribed)
Con Edison Region: $0.60/W
Up State Region: $0.45/W
Multifamily Affordable Housing Adder: additional $0.40/W (up to 50 kW)
Ground Source Heat Pump Rebate Program
Large Systems (> 10 cooling tons): $1,200/cooling ton
Home Performance with ENERGY STAR
NY Green Bank
Refundable Clean Heating Fuel Tax Credit (Personal)
On-Site Wind Incentive Program
Tier II: 10,000 kWh - 125,000 kWh of expected annual energy production: $1.00/annual kWh
Tier III: 125,000 kWh - 1,000,000 kWh of expected annual energy production: $0.30/ annual kWh
Tier IV: Greater than 1,000,000 kWh of expected annual energy production: $0.15/ annual kWh
These incentives are additive.
Anaerobic Digester Gas-to-Electricity Rebate and Performance Incentive
- Capacity Incentive: Varies on the construction and design of the system
- Performance Incentive: $0.025/kWh production payment for new systems for up to 10 years (estimated using a capacity factor of 75%)
- Interconnection Incentive: up to 75% of the costs exceeding $5,000
- Project Enhancement Incentives: Available for Black Start Capability, Hydrogen Sulfide reduction, design for accepting food waste and others
Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
Solar incentives encourage homeowners to switch their home over to renewable energy by offering financial incentives that lower the burden of solar panel installation and use. You may be eligible for several kinds 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 New York government and others from the federal government. Some broad categories of solar incentives include:
- Tax Credits: Tax credits reduce, dollar-for-dollar, the amount of income tax you owe the government. These differ from tax deductions.
- Net Metering: You may be able to sign a net metering contract with your Bethlehem utility company. This agreement may apply to all or a percentage of the excess electricity your solar panels generate. They will then deduct this value from your monthly utility bill.
- Rebates: Solar rebates can be offered by your state or county, or by your local utility company. These rebates are essentially cash back that is applied after your purchase of a solar system and before tax credits are calculated.
- Tax Exemptions: Sales tax exemptions are applied at the point of sale for your solar panels. Property tax exemptions let you ignore the added value of your solar system when you calculate the amount of property tax you need to pay.
Federal Solar Incentives
When you think about solar incentives, you likely think of federal incentives first. 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 the cost of your solar system.
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, accessories, labor and equipment. You can claim this credit for solar panels installed on a primary or secondary residence in the United States that you own. Originally, you could claim 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.
Have questions about how the ITC applies to your specific situation? Contact your local Bethlehem solar panel installation expert to get more information.
In August 2022, the ITC (now called the Clean Energy Credit) was bolstered by the passing of the Inflation Reduction Act. The Clean Energy Credit lasts until 2035. Any solar installation project that is completed between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2032 may qualify for a 30% tax credit; the 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.
Click here to learn more about the new Inflation Reduction Act. Your local Bethlehem solar panel company is the best resource for answering your questions regarding the new Clean Energy Credit and how it applies to you.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Some solar incentives are often also offered at the local or state level. As with federal incentives, these may include rebates, tax credits and more. Certain incentives are ongoing, while others are offered for only a limited time. Your local solar incentives might come from the New York government, or from your specific county or municipality.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Bethlehem
You can qualify for solar incentives from the federal government and the New York government, as well as from your local utility company. The growing availability of solar initiatives in the past 15 years has helped increase solar adoption nationwide. Reaching out to your local Bethlehem solar panel installation expert is the right first step towards making sure you get all the incentives you qualify for when you switch to solar energy.
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EcoWatch's Bethlehem, NY Solar Incentives FAQs
If I already have a solar system installed on my house, can I still claim incentives?
If your solar panels were installed after January 1, 2022, you may qualify for the newly increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. If your system was installed between 2006 and 2021, you might qualify for a tax credit between 26% and 30%, depending on the exact installation date. Speaking with a representative from the company that installed your solar system, or any local Bethlehem solar installer, can help you learn what incentives you can apply for.
How much can I save annually on my electric bill if I add solar panels to my house in Bethlehem?
When you add solar panels to your house in Bethlehem, you can anticipate savings of approximately $798.76 per year, or approximately $15,176.43 over the next 20 years.
When does the federal solar tax credit end?
The Clean Energy Credit (formerly called the federal solar tax credit, or the 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.
If I switch my appliances out for ones that use solar energy, are there benefits I can claim?
The new Inflation Reduction Act includes provisions for several incentives that reward homeowners for making eco-friendly upgrades. Some of these incentives include tax credits and rebates for installing new electric appliances. You can find more details about these incentives here.
Can I qualify for incentives both towards the initial cost of solar panels, and later as reimbursement?
Yes, you can receive both tax credits and rebates towards the cost of your solar panels. Depending on precisely which incentives you are claiming, they may apply in a different order. Be sure to speak with your solar installer or a local tax professional to confirm that you are claiming incentives correctly and getting the most money you can.
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.