Solar Panel Cost Guide in Sterling Heights, MI (Jan 2023)

  • Sterling Heights Solar Installation Cost: $11,959
  • 25-Year Savings: $13,160
  • Payback Period: 11.9 Years

See cost of a solar system near you:

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.

Average Cost of Solar Panels in Sterling Heights

Here's how much it might cost to switch to solar power in Sterling Heights.

The national average cost of solar panels is $2.66 per watt, but in Sterling Heights it's $3 per watt. To cover the typical energy needs of the average home in Sterling Heights, most homeowners require a 6.1-kilowatt system. Using the figure above, a solar installation costs around $11,959, or $8,850 after the federal solar tax credit of 30% is applied.

These figures are just averages, and how much solar costs for you will vary based on factors unique to your home and what company you want to go with. Even with the high upfront cost, the average Sterling Heights homeowner can save around $16,000 on their electricity bills over 20 years, which is one of the advantages of solar.

You can click the button below to get connected with a vetted solar company in Sterling Heights for a quote for your home.

Solar savings over time in Sterling Heights

Year Return on Investment
1 years $-10,955
3 years $-8,945
5 years $-6,935
7 years $-4,926
9 years $-2,916
11 years $-907
13 years $1,103
15 years $3,112
17 years $5,122
19 years $7,132
21 years $9,141
23 years $11,151
25 years $13,160

Top Solar Installers in Sterling Heights

When going solar, many homeowners decide to go with a solar company since DIY solar panel installation can be a difficult project. The expertise that solar installers offer can be helpful as well, particularly if you aren't sure what type of solar equipment would be right for your home.

If you'd like to make the switch to solar but still aren't sure which solar panel installer to go with, here are our suggestions for providers near you:

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

Solar Veteran

Michigan Solar Solutions

★★★★★
4.5

  • Great warranty coverage
  • Outstanding customer service
  • Offers products from leading manufacturers
  • Slightly limited service offerings
  • No leases or PPAs

Outstanding Local Installer

Strawberry Solar

★★★★★
4.5

  • Outstanding customer service
  • Representatives are experts on local policies
  • Educational, no-pressure sales approach
  • Limited warranty coverage
  • No leases or PPAs
  • Limited brands of solar equipment available

See all of the solar companies in Sterling Heights

Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in Sterling Heights

The cost of installing a solar system in Sterling Heights can vary by more than $10,000 from home to home. Your actual cost is determined by several factors. The most significant one is your system size, and other factors include equipment choices, financing options and the solar installer you choose.

Solar Equipment

One of the most important factors to consider when it comes to the cost of adopting solar energy is the size of the solar system, which is measured in kilowatts (kW). The more power your household consumes, the larger your system will likely need to be. You can expect to pay about $2,810 per kilowatt in Sterling Heights. Some solar panel brands — like Maxeon from SunPower — are more costly upfront but also tend to offer higher efficiency. In a city like Sterling Heights, where sunlight is relatively abundant, efficiency can quickly pay off. Plus, if you have a small roof or limited space for your panels, higher efficiency options will be more impactful. Additional equipment like electric vehicle chargers and solar batteries will also increase the cost.

Solar Financing Terms

If paying for solar panels out of pocket is too expensive, solar loans are a popular option because they decrease your upfront costs and let you pay for your system over a term of, on average, between five and seven years. When figuring out your overall cost, you should also calculate the interest you'll pay if you decide on a solar loan. Also, paying a higher down payment can lower the total interest paid over time.

Solar Panel Installation Company

A final factor to keep in mind when trying to figure out the cost of solar for your home or business in Sterling Heights is the company you hire to install your PV system. As with choosing a company to install new cabinets, for instance, you'll have no shortage of solar installers that offer a range of services for different budgets. Larger national companies generally have lower costs, but some local companies undercut them by offering sales and discounts. While the smaller companies might not have specific equipment options like Tesla Powerwall batteries or additional services like electric car charger installation, they might be cheaper overall.

Solar Panel Cost Data by System Size

System size Cost per system watt Solar system cost 25-Year savings Payback period
6 kW $2.92 $12,274 $12,529 12.4 years
8 kW $2.87 $16,051 $17,020 12.1 years
10 kW $2.81 $19,670 $21,668 11.9 years
12 kW $2.75 $23,132 $26,474 11.7 years
14 kW $2.70 $26,436 $31,437 11.4 years
16 kW $2.64 $29,584 $36,557 11.2 years
18 kW $2.59 $32,574 $41,835 10.9 years
20 kW $2.53 $35,406 $47,270 10.7 years

How to Save on Solar Panels

There are many solar installers to choose from, all of which offer different warranties, solar panel brands and price points. To help you select the right company for you, here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Reputation: Your solar installer should have a good reputation as a company and have demonstrated expertise in the field. A couple of ways to check this are to look for whether a company has technicians certified by the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) and if it has satisfied reviews from previous customers.
  • Contract: It's important to read your solar installer's contract carefully to understand what services they will provide, what the warranty covers and what expectations you should have about your solar system's energy production.
  • Solar Panel Brands: Homeowners will have different preferences for panels based on their locations and energy needs. Although there are many options for which model of solar panel you can get, not every company will have access to the exact one you may want or need, so be sure to peruse their list of options before deciding.
  • Installation Process: Homeowners should understand how exactly the installation process will go, as well as important factors like the completion timeline.

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

Solar Veteran

Michigan Solar Solutions

★★★★★
4.5

  • Great warranty coverage
  • Outstanding customer service
  • Offers products from leading manufacturers
  • Slightly limited service offerings
  • No leases or PPAs

Outstanding Local Installer

Strawberry Solar

★★★★★
4.5

  • Outstanding customer service
  • Representatives are experts on local policies
  • Educational, no-pressure sales approach
  • Limited warranty coverage
  • No leases or PPAs
  • Limited brands of solar equipment available

EcoWatch's Sterling Heights, MI Solar Cost FAQs

How much does it cost to install solar panels in Sterling Heights?

The average cost of solar panels in Sterling Heights is about $14,050 for a 5-kW system and $28,100 for a 10-kW system before the ITC, but the actual cost will depend on things such as the kind of solar panels you want, what size system you need and how much energy you use.

Should I lease or buy solar panels in Sterling Heights?

Leasing solar panels can be an appealing choice, because it typically comes with low or $0 upfront payments. The downside is that you won't be able to save as much. If you lease, you don't own the system, so you can't claim any incentives and your home value won't increase. Buying solar panels is a better option if you want to maximize your savings.

Can solar panels significantly reduce my electricity bills?

Solar panels can potentially eliminate your electricity bills depending on your location and the efficiency of your system. Even if it doesn't get rid of them completely, you can save a lot of money on your bills, about $826.76 per year.

How long do solar panels last in Sterling Heights?

Though the average lifespan of solar panels is 25 to 30 years, that doesn't mean they are completely unusable at that time. What this means is the amount of energy they produce will have decreased significantly after that point. You can decide to replace them after having them for that long or you can keep using them at a lower efficiency.

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.

Company 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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