2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Bristol, PA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Bristol.
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 Bristol?
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
Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
Solar incentives are designed to make renewable energy usage more affordable via financial incentives for individuals who install solar panels on their homes. Different kinds of incentives, including cash back, discounts or credit towards your monthly utility bill, might be available to you. Some incentives may be provided via the Pennsylvania government, by your utility company or by county or municipality, while other incentives are federal. Some solar incentives you might qualify for are:
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and similar performance-based incentives are generally handled by your state government. Once your solar system meets a certain threshold (usually a small amount of energy production), you can receive SRECs that can then be sold to your utility company or other buyers. The money you receive is usually considered part of your taxable income.
- Tax Credits: Tax credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions in the amount of income tax that you owe the government. (A tax credit is different from a tax deduction.)
- Rebates: Rebates, or cash back after a purchase, are normally given before any solar tax credits are calculated. These rebates can be offered by your local utility company, by your state or by your county.
- Net Metering: Net metering factors in after your solar system is up and running. If you have a net metering agreement with your Bristol utility company, the company will subtract the value of the excess energy your solar system produces from your monthly utility bill. In some locations, this credit is dollar-for-dollar, while in others you might make back a percentage of the value.
- Tax Exemptions: Sales tax exemptions are effective at the point of sale for your solar panels. Property tax exemptions let you exclude the added value of your solar system when calculating the amount of property tax you need to pay on your home.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal incentives are the kind of incentives that you are most likely to have some knowledge of. 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 predetermined percentage of your solar system's cost.
The ITC applies to solar panels installed on your primary or secondary residence in the United States. The solar panels must have been installed after January 1, 2006 on a property you own for you to be eligible for the credit. The ITC initially covered 30% of all system installation costs (panels, equipment, labor and accessories), although the covered amount has fluctuated slightly over time between 26-30%. The installation date of your solar system will determine what percentage you are eligible for. There is no cap on the claim amount.
Your local Bristol solar panel installation expert can provide more information about the ITC and how it may apply to your situation.
The Inflation Reduction Act, passed in August 2022, added more provisions to the ITC (as well as renaming it to the Clean Energy Credit). Homeowners can now qualify for a credit of 30% of the total solar system installation costs for projects that began after January 1, 2022 and will be finished by the end of 2032. The percentage will then begin to decrease annually until the Clean Energy Credit expires in 2035. The expansion also makes claiming credit for energy storage systems easier than ever before, beginning in 2023.
Click here to learn more about the new Inflation Reduction Act. The best way to understand how the new Clean Energy Credit applies to you is to reach out to your local Bristol solar panel installation expert with your questions.
State & Local Solar Incentives
There are often state solar incentives available in addition to federal ones. Tax credits, rebates and more can be offered at a more local level. Incentives might be given by your county or municipality, or by the state of Pennsylvania. Some incentives are available for only a limited time, while others are ongoing.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Bristol
Solar energy use nationwide has gone up tremendously in the last 15 years, in part due to the increase in availability of solar incentives. You can obtain these incentives from your local utility company, the federal government or the Pennsylvania government. Contact your local solar panel installation company today to find out more information and to save the most money possible on a solar system for your Bristol home.
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EcoWatch's Bristol, PA Solar Incentives FAQs
If I already have a solar system installed on my house, can I still claim incentives?
You should plan to talk to someone from the company that installed your solar system — or speak to a local Bristol solar installer — to learn about which incentives you may qualify for. If your system was installed after January 1, 2022, you likely qualify for the newly increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. Solar systems installed between 2006 and 2021 may qualify for a tax credit of 26-30%.
How much can I save on my electric bill annually if I install solar panels on my Bristol home?
On average, Bristol homeowners who install solar panels save around $809.47 per year, or around $15,379.89 over 20 years after they make the switch.
What are the best solar panel installation companies near me?
To discover the best solar panel installation companies near you, read our article on the top solar companies in Bristol.
What are some environmental benefits of adding solar panels to my home?
Solar energy is renewable — by switching where you get your energy, you help reduce the strain on our planet's resources. You can also reduce the CO2 emissions from your home by 250 pounds annually, or around 5,000 pounds in 20 years.
When does the federal solar tax credit end?
The federal solar tax credit, formerly called the ITC and now named the Clean Energy Credit, is set to end January 1, 2035. The current 30% credit will end in 2032, replaced by a 26% credit in 2033 and a 22% credit 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.