2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Akron, OH - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Akron.
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 March 14, 2023
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What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Akron?
Hamilton County - Home Improvement Program
Local Option - Special Energy Improvement Districts
Energy Conservation for Ohioans (ECO-Link) Program
Solar Renewable Energy Certificates Program (SRECs)
Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
Solar incentives are meant to encourage homeowners to make the switch to renewable energy by offering financial incentives meant to lower the burden of solar panel installation and use. Incentives may include things like discounts, cash back or monthly utility bill credits. Some incentives are provided by the federal government, while others are provided by the Ohio government or by your specific utility company, county or municipality. Categories of solar incentives include:
- Rebates: A solar rebate is a partial refund given after you've purchased your solar panels. These might be offered by your local utility company, your county or your state. The rebates are usually applied before tax credits are calculated.
- Net Metering: Net metering is an incentive you can get once your solar system is up and running. If you have a net metering agreement with your Akron utility company, the company will subtract the value of the excess energy your solar system produces from your utility bill each month. In some locations, this is a dollar-for-dollar credit, while in others you might get refunded a percentage of the value.
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs are credits that can be sold to your utility company (or other buyers) for money that normally counts as part of your taxable income. In most cases, a certain (small) threshold of energy production must be met before your solar system can earn SRECs or other performance-based incentives. Incentives like these are normally handled by your state government.
- Tax Exemptions: Your solar panel system could qualify for exemptions on both sales and property tax. Sales tax exemptions are effective at the time of purchase. Property tax exemptions let you exclude the added value of the solar panels when calculating property taxes on your home.
- Tax Credits: These credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions (not deductions) in how much in taxes you owe the government.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal solar incentives are likely the first thing that you think of when you think about solar incentives. The solar incentive that you're most likely to have heard of is the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC), which gives you a credit on your taxes equal to a specified percentage of the cost of your solar system.
The ITC can be applied to solar panels installed after January 1, 2006 on a primary or secondary residence that you own in the United States. Initially, the credit applied to 30% of the total cost — for panels, accessories, equipment and labor — although the percentage may range from 26-30%, depending on when your solar project was undertaken. There is no cap on the claim amount.
To better understand exactly how much money the ITC could save you, speak with your local Akron solar panel installation expert.
The Inflation Reduction Act, passed in August 2022, made some changes to the ITC (as well as retitling it 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 2032, the credit percentage will decrease slightly each year until the end of the program in 2035. The expansion to the program also makes it easier to get credit for energy storage systems, beginning in 2023.
More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. Your local Akron solar panel installer can answer any questions you have and explain how the new Clean Energy Credit may apply to you.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Rebates, tax credits and more might be provided at multiple levels. In addition to federal solar incentives, there are often state and local ones, too. Incentives may be offered by your county or municipality, or by the state of Ohio. Certain incentives might only be available for a limited time, while others are ongoing.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Akron
You can receive solar incentives from the federal government and the Ohio government, as well as from your local utility company. The growing 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 Akron solar installation company for more information about these incentives and to be sure that you're getting the largest number possible for your solar panels.
Best Solar Financing
Blue Raven Solar
- Industry-leading in-house financing
- Competitive pricing
- Excellent reputation
- Doesn't offer solar batteries (coming 2022)
- Price-match guarantee
- Sleek, efficient, and durable solar panels
- Best solar battery on the market
- Some reported issues with customer service
- Customer service varies by local dealer
EcoWatch's Akron, OH Solar Incentives FAQs
How do I know if I qualify for solar incentives?
Generally, solar incentives apply to:
- a new solar panel system
- installed on property you own
- within the U.S.
- within the date range specified by a particular incentive.
Specific incentives, including those given out by the Ohio government or by your county/municipality, may have additional qualifications. Talk to your local Akron solar installer to discover what incentives your project will qualify for.
What are the highest-rated solar panel installation companies near me?
To learn about the best solar panel installation companies near you, read our article on the best solar companies in Akron.
What are some environmental benefits of installing solar panels on my home?
You can decrease your carbon footprint by 400 pounds of CO2 annually by installing solar panels. This adds up to approximately 8,000 pounds in 20 years. Solar is also a renewable energy source, which means that switching your home over reduces the drain on our planet's resources.
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 slated 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 apply for incentives both towards the initial cost of solar panels, and later as reimbursement?
Yes, you can receive both rebates and tax credits towards the cost of your solar panels. Depending on precisely which incentives you are eligible for, 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 the correct incentives and that you're 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.