2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Scranton, PA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Scranton.
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 Scranton?
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 designed to make renewable energy usage more affordable via financial incentives for those who install solar panels on their homes. Various types of incentives, like cash back, discounts or monthly utility bill credits, might be available to you. Certain incentives may be provided via the Pennsylvania government, by your utility company or by county or municipality, while others are federal. Types of solar incentives might include:
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): In general, solar systems that produce over a specific (usually small) amount of electricity can qualify for SRECs or other performance-based incentives. SRECs and similar incentives are typically given at the state level. You can sell SRECs to your utility company or another buyer, and this is usually considered part of your taxable income.
- Tax Exemptions: Your solar system might qualify for both sales tax and property tax exemptions. 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 house.
- 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 state or your county. The cash back that you get from the rebates is normally applied before calculating tax credits.
- Tax Credits: These credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions (not deductions) in the amount of tax that you owe the federal government.
- Net Metering: Net metering is an incentive you can get once your solar system is up and running. If you've signed a net metering agreement with your Scranton utility company, it will subtract the value of the excess energy produced by your solar system from your monthly utility bill. In some places, this is a dollar-for-dollar credit, while in other areas you might get refunded a percentage of the value.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal incentives are the type of incentives that you are most likely to have some familiarity with. You might have heard of the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC. This is a tax credit that reduces your taxes by a specified percentage of the money you spend on solar panels for your home.
The ITC applies towards solar systems installed after January 1, 2006 and allows you to deduct from your taxes a percentage of the total cost of solar panels, labor, accessories and equipment. You can claim this credit for a solar panel system installed on a primary or secondary residence that you own in the United States. The original amount you could claim was 30% of the total cost, although depending on when the project was completed, your credit may range from 26-30%. There is no maximum claim amount.
Speaking with your local Scranton solar panel installation expert is the best way to understand how the ITC applies to you.
The Inflation Reduction Act, passed in August 2022, expanded and extended the ITC (as well as renaming it to the Clean Energy Credit). Under the new program, solar installation projects begun after January 1, 2022 and finished by December 31, 2032 might qualify for a 30% tax credit. The amount of the credit will then see a slight annual decrease until the current Clean Energy Credit expires in 2035. Beginning in 2023, it will also be easier to get credits for energy storage systems under this new program.
Click here to learn more about the new Inflation Reduction Act. To best understand how the new Clean Energy Credit might apply to you, reach out to your local Scranton solar installation expert.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Some solar incentives are often also provided by state and local governments. Like with federal incentives, these could include rebates, tax credits and more. Incentives might be given 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 Scranton
Solar incentives can come from the federal government, the Pennsylvania government or your local utility company. The growing number of available incentives has facilitated the nationwide growth of solar energy use in the last 15 years. If you're ready to switch over to solar energy, getting in touch with your local Scranton solar panel installation expert is a great first step.
Best Regional Coverage
- Great warranty coverage
- Representatives are experts on local policies
- Concierge service ensures steady communication
- Slightly limited service offerings
- 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 Scranton, PA Solar Incentives FAQs
How much can I save annually on my electric bill if I add solar panels to my house in Scranton?
On average, Scranton homeowners who install solar panels save around $718.13 per year, or around $13,644.38 over 20 years after they make the switch.
What are the environmental benefits of switching to solar?
Solar energy is renewable — by switching where you get your energy, you can help reduce the strain on our planet's resources. Solar panels can also lower your home's CO2 emissions by 250 pounds annually, or around 5,000 pounds in 20 years.
I want to switch my appliances out for ones that are more energy-efficient. Are there any credits I can apply for?
The new Inflation Reduction Act provides multiple incentives designed to reward homeowners who make eco-friendly upgrades. Some of these incentives include rebates and tax credits for installing new electric appliances. You can find more details about these incentives here.
Can I claim incentives both towards the up-front cost of solar panels, and later as reimbursement?
The order that incentives will be applied in may vary depending on which incentives you are claiming but generally yes, you can claim multiple types of incentives for your solar project. Check with your solar installer or a local tax professional to make sure you are claiming all the incentives you are eligible for and applying them in the correct order.
Can I use both solar and another type of renewable energy to power my home?
Yes, you can employ multiple types of renewable energy to power your home, such as a combination of wind and solar. You can also use both renewable energy sources and a non-renewable backup source of energy. Be sure to discuss your plan with your local Scranton solar panel installer, to get an understanding of what will be needed and what incentives you will or won't 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.