2023 Solar Incentives Guide for South Union, PA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in South Union.
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 South Union?
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" broadly refers to financial incentives put in place by solar companies and the government to encourage the adoption and use renewable energy by making solar panels more affordable. You may be eligible for different types 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 Pennsylvania government and others from the federal government. Types of solar incentives might include:
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and other performance-based incentives may be available to you if you have a solar system that produces more than a specified (usually small) amount of electricity. This category of incentives is generally handled at the state level. You can sell the SRECs you receive to your utility company or other buyers, and the money you receive in return is typically considered part of your taxable income.
- Tax Credits: Different from tax deductions, tax credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions in the amount of income tax that you owe the government.
- Tax Exemptions: Tax exemptions may come in two forms. The first is sales tax exemption, which is applied at the time you purchase your solar panels. The second is property tax exemption, which allows you to exclude the added value of your solar system when calculating property tax for your home.
- Rebates: Solar rebates may be provided by your state or county, or by your local utility company. These rebates work as cash back that is applied after you pay for a solar system and before tax credits are calculated.
- 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 South Union utility company, it will subtract the value of the excess energy produced by your solar system from your monthly utility bill. 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.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal incentives are the kind of incentives that you are most likely to have some knowledge of. An incentive that most people are probably familiar with is the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC). This incentive is a tax credit for a certain percentage of the cost of your solar system.
The ITC applies 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, accessories, equipment and labor — although that amount may range from 26-30%, depending on the installation date of your solar system. There is no cap on the amount you can claim.
To better understand how the ITC might apply to your situation, contact your local South Union solar panel installer and ask for more information.
In August 2022, the ITC (now referred to as the Clean Energy Credit) was bolstered by the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act. Homeowners are now eligible for a credit of 30% of the total costs of solar system installation for projects that began after January 1, 2022 and will be finished by the end of 2032. This percentage will then begin to decrease annually until the Clean Energy Credit expires in 2035. Beginning in 2023, it will also be easier to qualify for credits for energy storage systems under this new program.
More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. To fully understand how the new Clean Energy Credit applies to you, speak with your local South Union solar installation expert.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Some solar incentives are often also provided at the state and local level. Like with federal incentives, these may include rebates, tax credits and more. Some incentives are ongoing, while others may only be available for a limited time. Solar incentives might be provided by the Pennsylvania government, or by your county or municipality.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in South Union
Solar incentives may come from the federal government, the Pennsylvania government or your local utility company. The growing number of incentives available has contributed to a large increase in solar energy use in the last 15 years. Talking to your local South Union solar panel installation expert is the right first step towards making sure you get all the incentives you qualify for when you switch to solar energy.
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EcoWatch's South Union, PA Solar Incentives FAQs
Can I get any financial incentives when I add solar panels to a rental property, vacation home or commercial property?
While we recommend speaking with your local solar installer and/or tax professional to better understand what solar incentives apply to you, many can be claimed on a second home, provided that it is in the United States and owned by you. There may be additional incentives available specifically for commercial properties, depending on the specifics.
My home already has solar panels. Does my system qualify for any incentives?
If your solar system was installed after January 1, 2022, you may qualify for the recently increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. If you installed your system between 2006 and 2021, you may qualify for a tax credit between 26% and 30%, depending on the year it was installed. Talking to the company that installed your system, or any local South Union solar installer, can help you understand what incentives you can apply for.
How much will a solar system save me annually on my electric bill in South Union?
On average, homeowners in South Union who install solar panels save around $599.12 per year, or around $11,383.35 over 20 years after making the switch.
What are some of the environmental benefits of switching to solar?
Solar energy is a renewable energy source — by changing 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 400 pounds annually, or roughly 8,000 pounds over 20 years.
If I change out my appliances for ones that can utilize solar energy, are there any incentives I can claim?
The recently passed Inflation Reduction Act includes provisions for several incentives meant to reward homeowners who make eco-friendly upgrades. Some incentives include tax credits and rebates for installing new electric appliances. You can find more details about these incentives here.
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.