2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Lower Swatara, PA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Lower Swatara.
You'll learn about:
- Local & State Solar Incentives
- Federal Tax Credits (Updated for 2023 and beyond)
- Ways to optimize your solar investment
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What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Lower Swatara?
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
Solar incentives are intended to make renewable energy usage more affordable through financial incentives for those who install solar panels on their homes. You might qualify for different kinds of incentives, such as cash back, discounts or monthly utility bill credits, depending on your situation. Certain incentives come from your specific utility company, county or municipality, some from the Pennsylvania government and others from the federal government. Types of solar incentives might include:
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and similar other performance-based incentives might be available to you if the solar system on your home produces more than a specified (generally small) amount of electricity. This category of incentives is normally handled by the state government. You can sell your SRECs to your utility company or other buyers, and the money you make is normally considered part of your taxable income.
- Tax Exemptions: These can come in the form of property tax exemptions, which can let you exclude the value of your solar system when paying property tax on your house. You could also look for exemptions on sales tax at the time of purchase.
- Tax Credits: These credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions (not deductions) in how much income tax you owe the federal government.
- Net Metering: Net metering becomes relevant once your solar panels are up and running. If you have a net metering agreement with your Lower Swatara utility company, it will subtract the value of the excess energy your solar system produces from your utility bill each month. In some areas, this is a dollar-for-dollar credit, while in others you might receive a refund equivalent to a percentage of the value.
- Rebates: Rebates, or partial refunds after a purchase, are typically applied prior to any solar tax credits being calculated. These rebates can be offered by your local utility company, by your state or by your county.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal incentives are the kind of incentives that you are most likely to have some familiarity with. It's likely that you've heard of the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC. This incentive is a tax credit equal to a certain percentage of the money you spend on solar panels for your home.
The ITC was originally for 30% of the total cost of installing a solar system, although it has fluctuated slightly over the years between 26-30%. The installation date of your solar system will determine what percentage you qualify for. The total installation cost includes the panels themselves as well as the cost of labor, accessories and equipment. There is no maximum amount you can claim. The ITC applies 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.
To more fully understand how the ITC may apply to you, reach out to your local Lower Swatara solar panel installer and ask for more information.
In August 2022, the ITC (now called the Clean Energy Credit) was bolstered by the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act. The Clean Energy Credit re-raises the credit up to 30% for solar installations undertaken between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2032. After this, the percentage will be reduced slightly each year until the end of the program in 2035. The expansion also makes credits for energy storage systems even easier to claim, starting in 2023.
More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. The best way to fully understand how the new Clean Energy Credit might apply to you is to talk with your local Lower Swatara solar panel company.
State & Local Solar Incentives
There are often state solar incentives available in addition to federal ones. Rebates, tax credits and more may be available at a more local level. These solar incentives — which may be handled by the state of Pennsylvania, or by your county or municipality — may be offered for only a limited time, or on an ongoing basis.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Lower Swatara
Solar energy use nationwide has significantly increased in the last 15 years, in part thanks to the proliferation of solar incentives. You might receive these incentives from your local utility company, the Pennsylvania government or the federal government. We recommend talking to your local Lower Swatara solar installation company to learn more about these incentives and to make sure that you're getting the most money possible for your solar system.
EcoWatch's Lower Swatara, PA Solar Incentives FAQs
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