2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Bellefonte, PA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Bellefonte.
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 Bellefonte?
High Performance Buildings Incentive Program
Commercial loans/loan guarantees: $2 million
Grants: Lesser of 10% of project costs or $500,000
Wind and Geothermal Incentives Program
Manufacturer grants: $5,000 per job created within 3 years
Loans for geothermal systems: $3 per square foot of space served up to $5 million; also limited to 50% of eligible costs for residential systems.
Loans for wind energy production projects: $5 million
Grants for wind energy production projects: $1 million
Grants for feasibility studies: 50% of cost up to $175,000
Loan guarantee grants: Up to 75% of deficient funds up to $5 million
Solar Alternative Energy Credits
High Performance Building Incentives Program
First Energy (MetEdison, Penelec, Penn Power, West Penn Power) - Residential Solar Water Heating Program
FirstEnergy (MetEdison, Penelec, Penn Power, West Penn Power) - Residential Energy Efficiency Programs
Clothes Washer: $25- $50
Clothes Dryer: $50
Fridge/Freezer Recycling: $50
HVAC tune up: $50
Furnace Fan Motor: $150
Ductless Minisplit AC : $200
Central AC: $100 - $200
Air Source Heat pump: $250 - $500
Geothermal Heat Pump: $600
Packaged Terminal AC: $75
Packaged Terminal Heat Pump: $150
Programmable Thermostat: $25
Solar Water Heat: $500
Heat Pump Water Heater: $500
Home Energy Audit: $250
Lighting: Available as in-store discount in participating stores
Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
The phrase "solar incentives" includes a wide range of financial incentives designed to make installing and using solar panels more affordable. This is done to encourage people to switch to renewable energy. Incentives may include things like discounts, cash back or credit towards your monthly utility bill. Some incentives are handled federally, while others are handled by the Pennsylvania government or by your specific utility company, county or municipality. You might qualify for any of the following types of solar incentives:
- Tax Exemptions: Sales tax exemptions go into effect at the point of sale for your solar system. Property tax exemptions let you ignore the value added by your solar system when calculating the amount of property tax you need to pay on your home.
- 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 Bellefonte utility company, the company will subtract the value of the excess energy produced by your solar system from your utility bill each month. In some places, this credit is dollar-for-dollar, while in others you may get refunded a percentage of the value.
- Tax Credits: Unlike tax deductions, tax credits reduce, dollar-for-dollar, the amount of income tax that you owe the government.
- Rebates: Solar rebates can be provided by your local utility company, or by your county or state. These rebates work as partial refunds that are applied after your purchase of solar panels and before tax credits are calculated.
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): Generally, solar systems that produce over a threshold (normally small) amount of electricity can qualify for SRECs or other performance-based incentives. SRECs and similar incentives are typically provided by your state government. You can sell SRECs to your utility company or another buyer, and generally the money you make is normally considered part of your taxable income.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal incentives are the type of incentives that you are most likely to have some familiarity with. 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 certain percentage of your solar system's cost.
The ITC originally covered 30% of the total cost of solar panel installation, and has fluctuated slightly over the years between 26-30%. The percentage you qualify for will depend on when your solar system was installed. The total cost of installation includes the panels themselves as well as the cost of accessories, labor and equipment. There is no maximum claim amount. The ITC can be applied to solar panels installed after January 1, 2006 on your primary or secondary residence. The residence must be in the United States and owned by you.
Your local Bellefonte solar panel installer can provide you with more information about the ITC and how it applies to your situation.
The ITC was renewed and increased in scope after the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act in August 2022. It's also now called the Clean Energy Credit. The new Clean Energy Credit extends until 2035. You can now apply for a 30% credit for solar systems that began installation after January 1, 2022 and are completed by the end of 2032. The credit will then decrease annually until it expires. The expansion also makes credits for energy storage systems even easier to claim, beginning in 2023.
Click here to learn more about the new Inflation Reduction Act. The best way to fully understand how the new Clean Energy Credit will apply to you is to talk with your local Bellefonte solar panel installation expert.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Some solar incentives may be provided by state and local governments. As with federal incentives, these could include rebates, tax credits and more. Incentives might be provided by your county or municipality, or by the state of Pennsylvania. Certain incentives may be available for only a limited time, while others are ongoing.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Bellefonte
There are a number of different solar incentives: those provided by local utility companies, those provided by the federal government and those provided by the Pennsylvania government, to name a few. The use of solar energy has increased enormously in the last 15 years, thanks to these incentives. Speak with your local solar panel installation company today to find out more information and to save as much money as possible on a solar system for your Bellefonte home.
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EcoWatch's Bellefonte, PA Solar Incentives FAQs
What if I add a solar system to a vacation home, rental property or commercial property? Will I still qualify for incentives?
While we recommend getting in touch with your local solar installer and/or tax professional to better understand what solar incentives apply to you, many will apply to a second home, provided that it is in the United States and owned by you. There may be additional incentives available for commercial properties specifically, depending on the specifics.
If I already have a solar system installed on my house, can I still claim incentives?
If your solar system was installed after January 1, 2022, you may qualify for the newly increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. If you had your system installed between 2006 and 2021, you might qualify for a tax credit between 26% and 30%, depending on the exact installation date. Talking to the company that installed your system, or any local Bellefonte solar installer, can help you learn what incentives you qualify for.
How much can I save annually on my electric bill if I add solar panels to my Bellefonte home?
Once you add solar panels to your house in Bellefonte, you can anticipate savings of approximately $600.52 per year, or approximately $11,409.87 over the next 20 years.
What are some environmental benefits of installing solar panels on my house?
Solar energy is renewable — by changing where you get your energy, you help lessen the strain on our planet's resources. A solar system can also reduce your home's CO2 emissions by 400 pounds annually, or around 8,000 pounds over 20 years.
How long until the federal solar tax credit ends?
The Clean Energy Credit (formerly called the federal solar tax credit, or the ITC), is scheduled to end on January 1, 2035. Currently set at 30%, the credit will drop to 26% in 2033 and to 22% in 2034.
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.