2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Montgomery, PA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Montgomery.
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 Montgomery?
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
The term "solar incentives" refers broadly to financial incentives designed to encourage the use of renewable energy by making installing and using solar panels more affordable. You may be eligible for different kinds of incentives, such as discounts, cash back or credit towards your monthly utility bill, depending on your situation. Certain incentives come from your specific utility company, county or municipality, some from the state of Pennsylvania and others from the federal government. Some broad categories of solar incentives include:
- Rebates: Rebates, or partial refunds after a purchase, are usually given prior to any solar tax credits being calculated. These rebates may be offered by your local utility company, by your state or by your county.
- Tax Credits: Tax credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions that lower the amount of income tax you owe the federal government. (This is different from a tax deduction.)
- Tax Exemptions: These can come in the form of property tax exemptions, which let you exclude the value of your solar system when paying taxes on your home. You could also look for exemptions on sales tax at the time of purchase.
- Net Metering: Net metering is an incentive you can get once your solar panels are up and running. If you have a net metering agreement with your Montgomery utility company, it will subtract the value of the excess energy your solar system produces from your monthly utility bill. In some places, this credit is dollar-for-dollar, while in other areas you might get refunded a percentage of the value.
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and similar performance-based incentives may be available to you if the solar system on your home produces over a specified (usually small) amount of electricity. These types of incentives are normally handled by the state government. You can sell any SRECs you have to your utility company or other buyers, and the money you make is typically considered part of your taxable income.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal solar incentives are probably the first thing that you think of when thinking about solar incentives. It's likely that you've heard of the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC. The ITC is a tax credit equal to a specified percentage of the money you spend on solar panels for your home.
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. Originally, the tax credit was for 30% of the total cost — for panels, equipment, labor and accessories — although the percentage may range from 26-30%, depending on the installation date of your solar system. There is no cap on the amount you can claim.
Your local Montgomery solar panel installation expert can provide you with more information about the ITC and how it might apply to your situation.
In August 2022, the Inflation Reduction Act made revisions to the ITC, now dubbed the Clean Energy Credit. The Clean Energy Credit bolsters the current credit, increasing it up to 30% for solar systems installed between 2022 and 2032. After 2032, the credit percentage will be reduced slightly each year until the program expires in 2035. The expansion to the program also makes claiming credit for energy storage systems easier than ever before, beginning in 2023.
More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. To best understand how the new Clean Energy Credit applies to you, speak with your local Montgomery solar installers.
State & Local Solar Incentives
There are often state solar incentives available in addition to federal ones. Rebates, tax credits and more might be available at a more local level. Incentives may be offered by your county or municipality, or by the state of Pennsylvania. Some incentives may be available for only a limited time, while others are ongoing.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Montgomery
You can qualify for solar incentives from the Pennsylvania government and the federal government, as well as from your local utility company. The growing availability of solar initiatives over the last 15 years has helped increase solar adoption nationwide. Your local Montgomery solar panel installation company can help you learn more about which incentives you can apply for, and get you feeling good about making the change to renewable energy today.
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EcoWatch's Montgomery, PA Solar Incentives FAQs
What if I want to add a solar system to a vacation home, rental property or commercial property? Do I still qualify for incentives?
Many solar incentives apply to a property located within the United States that you own; most secondary residences will fall into this category. Other solar incentives may be available for commercial properties, depending on the details. We recommend getting in touch with your local solar installer and/or tax professional to best understand what incentives apply to your specific situation.
What are the best solar panel installation companies near me?
To find a top-rated solar panel installer, check out our guide to the best solar companies in Montgomery.
What are some environmental benefits of installing solar panels on my home?
Solar energy is a renewable energy source — by switching where you get your energy, you help reduce the strain on our planet's resources. A solar system can also reduce the CO2 emissions from your home by 250 pounds annually, or around 5,000 pounds over 20 years.
If I trade in my appliances for ones that utilize solar energy, are there any credits that I can claim?
The new Inflation Reduction Act introduces several incentives meant to reward homeowners for making eco-friendly upgrades. Some incentives include rebates and tax credits for installing new electric appliances. You can find more details about these incentives here.
Can I use both solar and another type of renewable energy to power my home?
Yes, you can utilize multiple types of renewable energy to power your home — for example, a combination of wind and solar. You can also use both renewable energy sources and a backup source of non-renewable energy. Be sure to discuss your plan with your local Montgomery solar panel installer, so that you understand what you'll need and what types of incentives you might or might not qualify for.
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.