2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Great Falls, VA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Great Falls.
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 Great Falls?
Income Tax Deduction for Energy-Efficient Products
Local Option- Renewable Energy Machinery and Tools Property Tax Exemption
Local Option - Residential Property Tax Exemption for Solar
Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
Solar incentives are intended to encourage homeowners to make the switch to renewable energy by providing incentives that lower the financial burden of solar panel installation and use. Incentives can include things like discounts, cash back or credit on your utility bill each month. Some incentives are offered federally, while others are handled by the Virginia government or your utility company, county or municipality. Some solar incentives you might qualify for are:
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): In most cases, solar systems that produce over a specific (normally small) amount of electricity will qualify for SRECs or other performance-based incentives. SRECs and performance-based incentives in general are typically provided at the state level. SRECs can be sold to your utility company or another buyer, and generally the money you make is normally 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.)
- Tax Exemptions: Tax exemptions may come in two forms. First, there is sales tax exemption, applied when you purchase solar panels. The second is property tax exemption, which allows you to ignore the added value of your solar system when paying property tax on your home.
- Rebates: Rebates, or cash back after a purchase, are normally applied before any solar tax credits are calculated. These rebates may be given by your local utility company, by your state or by your county.
- Net Metering: Net metering becomes relevant once your solar system is up and running. If you've signed a net metering agreement with your Great Falls utility company, it will subtract the value of the excess energy produced by your solar system from your utility bill each month. In some locations, this credit is dollar-for-dollar, while in others you may receive a refund equivalent to a percentage of the value.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal solar incentives are likely the first thing that you think of when you think about solar incentives. You might have heard of the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC. The ITC is a tax credit equal to a certain percentage of the money you spend on your solar system.
The ITC can be applied to a solar system installed on your primary or secondary residence in the United States. The solar panels have to have been installed on a property you own after January 1, 2006 for you to be eligible for the credit. The ITC initially covered 30% of all costs (panels, labor, equipment and accessories), although the amount has fluctuated slightly over the last few years between 26-30%. The amount you qualify for will depend on when your solar system was installed. There is no cap on the amount you can claim.
To best understand how the ITC may apply to your situation, speak to your local Great Falls solar panel installation expert and ask for more information.
The Inflation Reduction Act, passed in August 2022, expanded and extended the ITC (as well as renaming it to the Clean Energy Credit). The new Clean Energy Credit is valid until 2035. American homeowners can now receive a 30% credit for solar systems installed between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2032. This credit will then decrease annually until its expiration. Beginning in 2023, it will also be easier to obtain credits for energy storage systems with the new act.
Click here to learn more about the new Inflation Reduction Act. Your local Great Falls solar panel company can answer your questions and explain how the new Clean Energy Credit may apply to you.
State & Local Solar Incentives
Some solar incentives may be provided at the state and local level. Similar to federal incentives, these may include rebates, tax credits and more. Incentives may be handled by the state of Virginia, or by your county or municipality. Certain incentives might only be available for a limited time, while others are ongoing.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Great Falls
The variety of solar incentives available has helped tremendously increase the nationwide adoption of solar energy over the past 15 years. You can get solar incentives from the federal government, the Virginia government or from your local utility company. Talking to your local Great Falls solar panel installer is the best first step towards getting the most money possible when you switch to solar energy.
EcoWatch's Great Falls, VA Solar Incentives FAQs
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.