2023 Solar Incentives Guide for Suffolk, VA - Tax Credits & Rebates

In this guide, we'll cover the latest solar incentives and rebates available in Suffolk.

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.
Get a free quote from one of our trusted Suffolk solar installers to see how much you can save.

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Data Analysis: James Savino

Ranking Methodology: Karsten Neumeister

Updated January 20, 2023

Why you can trust EcoWatch

We work with a panel of solar experts to create unbiased reviews that empower you to make the right choice for your home. No other site has covered renewables as long as us, which means we have more data and insider information than other sites. Our rankings are never affected by revenue or partnerships.

What Solar Tax Credits, Incentives, and Rebates are Available in Suffolk?

Income Tax Deduction for Energy-Efficient Products

Incentive Type:
Personal Tax Deduction
20% of the sales tax paid by an individual

Local Option- Renewable Energy Machinery and Tools Property Tax Exemption

Incentive Type:
Property Tax Incentive
Depends on the local governing body

Local Option - Residential Property Tax Exemption for Solar

Incentive Type:
Property Tax Incentive
Varies (local option)

Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit

Incentive Type:
Personal Tax Credit
30% federal tax credit for systems placed in service after 12/31/2021 and before 01/01/2033. Good for: solar water heat, solar photovoltaics, biomass, geothermal heat pumps, wind (small), fuel cells using renewable fuels.

Source: https://www.dsireusa.org/


Solar incentives are meant to encourage people to make the switch to renewable energy by providing incentives that lower the financial burden of solar panel installation and use. Various kinds of incentives, including discounts, cash back or monthly utility bill credits, may be available to you. Certain incentives may be offered by the Virginia government, by your utility company or by county or municipality, while others are federal. Categories of solar incentives include:

  • Rebates: A rebate is a partial refund given after you've purchased your solar panels. Rebates could be offered by your local utility company, your county or your state. The rebates are usually applied before tax credits are calculated.
  • Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC): SRECs are credits that can be sold to your utility company (or other buyers) for money that is generally considered part of your taxable income. Generally, there is a small threshold of energy production to meet before your solar system can earn SRECs or other performance-based incentives. These kinds of incentives are typically handled by your state government.
  • Tax Exemptions: Your solar panels could qualify for both sales tax and property tax exemptions. Sales tax exemptions are effective at the time of purchase. Property tax exemptions let you ignore the value added by your solar panels when you are calculating property taxes on your house.
  • Tax Credits: Unlike tax deductions, tax credits are dollar-for-dollar reductions in the amount of income tax that you owe the government.
  • Net Metering: Make sure you speak with your Suffolk utility company about signing a net metering agreement. This will allow you to get a credit towards your utility bill every month for the value of excess energy your solar panels generate. You might receive either a dollar-for-dollar credit or a percentage of the value.

Federal Solar Incentives

When people think of solar incentives, federal incentives may be the first thing that comes to mind. The Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, or ITC, is likely the most well-known federal solar incentive. The ITC provides a tax credit for a specific percentage of your solar system's cost.

The ITC initially applied to 30% of the cost of installing a solar system, although it has fluctuated slightly over the last few years between 26-30%. The installation date of your solar system will determine what percentage you qualify for. The cost of installation includes the panels themselves as well as the cost of equipment, accessories and labor. There is no maximum claim amount. The ITC can be applied to solar systems installed after January 1, 2006 on your primary or secondary residence. The residence must be owned by you and in the United States.

Curious how the ITC might apply to your specific situation? Contact your local Suffolk solar panel installer to get more information.

In August 2022, the ITC (now titled the Clean Energy Credit) was bolstered by the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act. For solar systems installed between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2032, homeowners can apply for a credit for 30% of the total cost. This percentage will decrease annually after 2032 until the Clean Energy Credit ends in 2035. Starting in 2023, the expansion will also make credits for energy storage systems even easier to claim.

More information about the new Inflation Reduction Act can be found here. Your local Suffolk solar panel installation expert is the best person to answer your questions about the new Clean Energy Credit and how it applies to you.

State & Local Solar Incentives

Tax credits, rebates and more can be claimed at multiple levels. In addition to federal solar incentives, there are often state and local ones, too. These incentives might be provided by the Virginia government, or by your county or municipality. Certain incentives are ongoing, while others are available for a limited time.

Next Steps for Installing Solar in Suffolk

The expanding number of solar incentives available has enormously increased the adoption of solar energy nationwide over the last 15 years. You may receive solar incentives from your local utility company, the Virginia government or the federal government. If you're ready to make the change to solar energy, talking to your local Suffolk solar panel installation expert is an excellent place to start.

Best National Provider

SunPower

★★★★★
5.0

  • Most efficient panels on the market
  • National coverage
  • Cradle to Cradle sustainability certification
  • Great warranty coverage
  • Expensive
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

Best Solar Financing

Blue Raven Solar

★★★★★
4.5

  • Industry-leading in-house financing
  • Competitive pricing
  • Excellent reputation
  • Doesn't offer solar batteries (coming 2022)

Best Technology

Tesla Energy

★★★★★
4.5

  • 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 Suffolk, VA Solar Incentives FAQs

Can I claim incentives for adding solar panels to a vacation home, rental property or commercial property?

While we recommend getting in touch with your local solar installer and/or tax professional to fully understand what solar incentives apply to you, many incentives will apply to a second home, as long as it is in the United States and owned by you. There may be other incentives available specifically for commercial properties, depending on the specifics.

My home already has solar panels installed. Does my system qualify for any incentives?

Your best bet is to talk to a representative from the company that installed your solar panels — or speak to a local Suffolk solar installer — to better understand which incentives you might qualify for. If your system was installed after January 1, 2022, you likely qualify for the newly increased 30% tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act. Solar panels installed between 2006 and 2021 may qualify for a tax credit of 26-30%.

What are the environmental benefits of switching to solar energy?

You can decrease your carbon footprint by 300 pounds of CO2 annually by switching to solar panels. This adds up to around 6,000 pounds over 20 years. Solar is also a renewable energy source, which means that switching your home over reduces the drain on our planet's resources.

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 eligible for but in most cases yes, you can claim multiple types of incentives for your solar project. Get in touch with your solar installer or a local tax professional to confirm you are claiming all possible incentives and applying them in the correct order.

Can I use multiple types of renewable energy to power my home?

Yes, you can use multiple types of renewable energy to power your home — for example, a combination of solar and wind power. You can also combine renewable energy generation with a backup source of non-renewable energy. Be sure to discuss your plan with your local Suffolk solar installation expert, so that you understand what you'll need and what kinds of incentives you may or may 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.

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