2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Lorton, VA - Tax Credits & Rebates
In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Lorton.
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
Why you can trust EcoWatch
What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Lorton?
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
The term "solar incentives" broadly refers to financial incentives that are in place to encourage the use of renewable energy by making installing and using solar panels more affordable. Incentives might include things like discounts, cash back or credit towards your monthly utility bill. Some incentives are offered federally, while others are handled by the Virginia government or your utility company, county or municipality. Types of solar incentives might include:
- Rebates: Solar rebates might be offered by your local utility company, or by your state or county. These rebates are essentially cash back that is applied after you pay for a solar system and before tax credits are calculated.
- Tax Exemptions: Your solar panel system might qualify for exemptions on both sales and property tax. Sales tax exemptions are effective at the time of purchase. Property tax exemptions let you ignore the value added by your solar panels when calculating property taxes on your home.
- Net Metering: Net metering becomes relevant after your solar panels are up and running. If you have a net metering agreement with your Lorton utility company, the company will subtract the value of the excess energy your solar system produces from your monthly utility bill. In some locations, this is a dollar-for-dollar credit, while in other places you may receive a refund equivalent to a percentage of the value.
- Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs and other similar performance-based incentives are normally handled by your state government. Once your solar panel system meets the qualification threshold (normally a small amount of energy production), you are eligible to receive SRECs that you can then sell to your utility company or other buyers. The money you make from the sale is generally considered part of your taxable income.
- Tax Credits: Tax credits reduce, dollar-for-dollar, the total amount of tax you owe the government. Tax credits are different from tax deductions.
Federal Solar Incentives
Federal solar incentives are likely 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 that reduces your taxes by a specified percentage of the money you spend on solar panels for your home.
The ITC can be applied to solar panels installed on your primary or secondary residence in the United States. The solar system has 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 installation costs (panels, accessories, equipment and labor), although the covered amount has fluctuated slightly over the 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 understand exactly how much the ITC could save you, contact your local Lorton solar panel installation expert.
The Inflation Reduction Act, passed in August 2022, expanded and extended the ITC (as well as renaming it to the Clean Energy Credit). The Clean Energy Credit re-raises the credit up to 30% for solar installation projects started after January 1, 2022 and completed by the end of 2032. After 2032, the percentage will see a slight decrease annually 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. Your local Lorton solar panel installers are the best people to answer your questions regarding the new Clean Energy Credit and how it 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 can include tax credits, rebates and more. Some incentives are ongoing, while others are available for a limited time. These incentives might be provided by the Virginia government, or by your county or municipality.
Next Steps for Installing Solar in Lorton
You can apply for and receive solar incentives from the Virginia government and the federal government, as well as from your local utility company. The growing availability of solar initiatives in the past 15 years has helped greatly increase nationwide adoption of solar energy. Speaking with your local Lorton solar panel installer is the right first step towards making sure you get all the incentives you qualify for when you switch to solar energy.
Best Solar Financing
Blue Raven Solar
- Industry-leading in-house financing
- Competitive pricing
- Excellent reputation
- Doesn't offer solar batteries (coming 2022)
- 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 Lorton, VA Solar Incentives FAQs
Can I receive any incentives when I add solar panels to a vacation home, rental property or commercial property?
While we recommend talking to your local solar installer and/or tax professional to fully understand what solar incentives apply to you, many will apply to a second home, provided that it is in the United States and owned by you. There may be other incentives available specifically for commercial properties, depending on the details.
How can I find out if I qualify for specific solar incentives?
It's a good idea to talk to your local Lorton solar installer for a better understanding of which incentives your project may qualify for. Usually, solar incentives apply to new solar systems installed on a property you own (in the U.S.) within a specified date range. Some incentives, such as those offered by the government of Virginia, may have other requirements.
What are some environmental benefits of installing solar panels on my house?
You can reduce your carbon footprint by 300 pounds of CO2 annually by switching to solar panels. This adds up to approximately 6,000 pounds in 20 years. Solar is also a renewable energy source, meaning that switching your home over lessens the drain on our planet's resources.
When does the federal solar tax credit end?
The Clean Energy Credit (previously referred to as the federal solar tax credit, or ITC), is scheduled to end on January 1, 2035. Currently set at 30%, the credit will drop to 26% in 2033 and to 22% in 2034.
Can I use a combination of solar and another type of renewable energy to power my home?
You can use multiple types of renewable energy, or a combination of renewable and non-renewable energy, to power your home. Be sure to discuss your ideas with your local Lorton solar installer. They can help you plan your project and also help you understand the various incentives that 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.