Solar Panel Cost in Minnesota (2022 Local Savings Guide)

Here’s a quick look at the estimated cost of solar in Minnesota:

  • Average Cost Per Watt: $2.84
  • Cost of Average System: $16,813*
  • Cost of Energy Without Solar: $40,266
  • Payback Period: 13 Years**
  • Lifetime Savings of Going Solar: $17,546

*Average system size is calculated using data from the Energy Information Administration. This price is after tax credit.
**Payback period is calculated assuming the system is purchased in cash.

Ecowatch Author Karsten Neumeister

By Karsten Neumeister, Solar Expert

Updated 9/19/2022

Why You Can Trust EcoWatch

Our content is created and advised by solar industry experts, giving you the information you need to make smart decisions about solar for your home. No other site has access to the same data and insider information as EcoWatch, and you can rest assured our reviews and rankings are never affected by revenue or partnerships.

Outstanding Regional Installer
Badge icon

Regional Service

Ecowatch rating

Average cost

$$$$$

Read full review now

All Energy Solar

  • Pros icon Full-service home energy solutions
  • Pros icon Excellent reputation
  • Pros icon NABCEP-certified technicians
  • Con icon Expensive

Services Offered

  • Service icon Solar Panels
  • Service icon Solar Batteries
  • Service icon Electrical Work
  • Service icon System Monitoring
Outstanding Regional Installer
Badge icon

Regional Service

Ecowatch rating

Average cost

$$$$$

Read full review now

Sun Badger Solar

  • Pros icon Offers products from leading manufacturers
  • Pros icon Competitive pricing
  • Pros icon Offers rewards for customer referrals
  • Con icon No leases or PPAs
  • Con icon Relatively young company

Services Offered

  • Service icon Solar Panels
  • Service icon Solar Batteries
  • Service icon EV Chargers
  • Service icon Maintenance & Repairs
Outstanding Local Installer
Badge icon

Local Service

Ecowatch rating

Average cost

$$$$$

Read full review now

MN Solar and More, LLC

  • Pros icon NABCEP-certified technicians
  • Pros icon Offers rewards for customer referrals
  • Pros icon Excellent reputation
  • Con icon Limited service area
  • Con icon Limited information available on website
  • Con icon Relatively young company

Services Offered

  • Service icon Solar Panels
  • Service icon Solar Batteries
  • Service icon EV Chargers
  • Service icon Electrical Work

Cost of Solar Panels in Minnesota

Based on market research and data from our top solar brands, we’ve found that the average cost of solar panels in Minnesota is $2.84 per watt, which is above the national average of $2.66 per watt. The typical size of a solar panel system in Minnesota is 8 kilowatts, which would cost roughly $22,720, or $16,813 after the federal tax credit.

Keep in mind that these figures are only estimates, and the price of installing solar photovoltaic (PV) systems for your home may look quite different based on factors unique to you. We recommend getting quotes from at least three installers and comparing them to find the best deal.

Solar Panel System Installation Cost in Minnesota

Depending on the size of your system and the company you choose, we’ve estimated that a solar panel installation in Minnesota would cost somewhere between $14,000 and $29,000 before applying any tax credits or solar incentives.

To offset the average monthly electric bill of $102, a Minnesota resident would need roughly an 8-kilowatt solar panel system, which comes out to about $16,813 after factoring in the 26% federal tax credit. 

We’ve included the average prices for solar renewable energy systems in Minnesota before and after the tax credit in the table below:

Size of Solar Panel System Minnesota Solar Panel Cost Cost After Federal Tax Credit
5 kW $14,200 $10,508
6 kW $17,040 $12,610
7 kW $19,880 $14,711
8 kW $22,720 $16,813
9 kW $25,560 $18,914
10 kW $28,400 $21,016

Interested to learn about the best solar companies in Minnesota? We’ve vetted a number of installers that offer affordable, high-quality systems. Select one of our top providers below to learn more. 

See also: Calculate the costs and savings you can get from installing solar panels

What Determines the Cost of Solar Panels in Minnesota?

The cost of solar panels in Minnesota can vary quite a lot, depending on a few major cost factors. Most homeowners in the state pay around $16,813 for their solar energy systems, but your price could fall anywhere between $10,508 and $23,118 — the typical price range in the area. 

We’ll discuss some of the more crucial things that can have an impact on your solar system price below.

solar panels installed on a residential building

Solar Equipment

One of the largest deciding factors of your solar panel system price is the equipment you install. Both the type of equipment and the brand of the solar panels you choose will play a role in your total.

Minnesota is home to some severe weather, including intense snow storms, thunderstorms and strong winds. While these weather events are unlikely to damage your solar panels, they do make power outages a more significant risk. 

As a result, some homeowners in Minnesota commonly choose add-on products like solar batteries that store electricity to maintain power through the relatively frequent blackouts. Solar batteries are great assets in Minnesota, but they also drive up the cost of installing your solar system. The most popular batteries will add around $10,000 to your total.

Additionally, not all solar equipment is created equal, and some brands are far more beneficial in Minnesota than others. The state receives just 195 sunny days per year, which is well below the national average.

The low intensity of Minnesota sunlight, or sometimes lack thereof, means that high-efficiency solar panels are a requirement in the area, especially if you want to eliminate your energy bills. Efficient panel brands — like Maxeon panels from SunPower — are more costly and will increase your expected solar system price.

Solar Financing in Minnesota

Solar panel systems in Minnesota will always be expensive, but the specific price you pay will depend, in part, on how you pay for them.

  • Using cash to purchase your solar equipment will mean you’ll avoid interest and enjoy an overall lower total. However, you will need a much larger payment upfront. 
  • Choosing a solar loan will reduce or eliminate that upfront payment, but your all-in costs to go solar will be more expensive because of the interest payments.

Luckily, Minnesota has a few options for making solar financing more accessible. For one, the Minnesota Property Assessed Clean Energy (MinnPACE) program seeks to provide affordable solar loan solutions to all homeowners. 

Additionally, the Clean Energy States Alliance (CESA) serves to provide Minnesota residents (and residents of several other states) with low-APR loan options that specifically appeal to low- and moderate-income households. 

Residential solar financing via the Center for Energy and Environment (CEE) is also an option for those who don’t qualify for low-income benefits.

Minnesota Solar Installation Company

The solar installation company you choose can also play a fairly significant role in your overall pricing. Each company uses different pricing models based on the labor and equipment costs, and some companies offer discounted services or equipment to keep costs down for customers. 

For this reason, the same equipment from two companies could be priced wildly differently.

close-up shot of solar panels

Additionally, every solar installer offers different products, and the available solar panel brands can affect the prices you’re quoted for service. For example, SunPower, a national solar company in Minnesota, only installs Maxeon solar panels. These products are considered high-quality and come with an industry-leading warranty. 

However, a local company like All Energy Solar installs products from Tesla, JA Solar and LONGi. These products can’t match the power and efficiency of Maxeon panels, but they’re also less expensive. As such, All Energy Solar will naturally be a more affordable choice than SunPower, although it’s still important to factor in quality.

Additional Considerations and Costs in Minnesota

There are some other minor factors you’ll want to consider when choosing a solar panel installation company in Minnesota. We’ll include some information about these factors below.

  • Permits: Every individual municipality in Minnesota requires that a building permit is filed before work on a solar system installation can begin. Most of the time, the permitting process is tackled by your installer, but you should confirm this before signing any contracts. 
  • Interconnection agreement: The State of Minnesota requires that all grid-tied PV system installations must be cleared with the local electrical provider before turning the system on. To get permission to operate (PTO) from your utility, customers must file for interconnection. This usually comes with a fee of around $100 in Minnesota and should be handled by your solar installer.
  • Warranties: Solar panel warranties are an important part of protecting your system from damage and other issues. The longer the warranty, the better, but you should also consider how comprehensive it is. The best warranties include protection for your panel performance, equipment damage and improper installation.
  • HOAs: Minnesota is one of the few states that haven’t passed any solar rights laws. As such, your homeowners association (HOA) can legally prevent you from installing solar, so you should check with your manager before
    proceeding.
  • Environmental zoning: Minnesota’s zoning laws are conducive to installing solar panels, but you should still confirm with your installer that there won’t be any issues.

Minnesota Solar Incentives

To reduce the upfront cost of solar panels in Minnesota, there are a number of state, federal and local incentives you can take advantage of. Here are the highlights:

Minnesota Solar Incentive How it Affects the Cost of Solar Panels in Minnesota
Sales Tax Exemption Solar electric equipment purchased in Minnesota is 100% exempt from the state sales tax. 
Property Tax Exemption Although installing a solar PV system will increase your property value, Minnesota has made sure your property taxes won’t rise as a result.
Net Metering Through net metering programs, which municipal and public utilities are required to offer in Minnesota, you can get compensated by your utility company for your panels’ excess energy production.
Local Solar Rebates & Incentives Make sure to look up any additional rebate programs or credits available from your city or utility company. For example, Minnesota Power, the City of Minneapolis and Rochester Public Utilities all offer their own solar rewards.
Federal Solar Tax Credit The federal solar tax credit, also known as the solar investment tax credit (ITC) is currently valued at 26% of your total system cost. It will decrease to 22% in 2023 and, unless renewed by Congress, disappear completely for residential systems come 2024.

The Best Solar Panel Brands Available in Minnesota

Minnesota is home to nearly 50 solar panel installers, all of which provide access to a different subset of solar panel brands.1 These brands vary in price and efficiency, so choosing one can be challenging. 

The table below includes a price comparison of the top solar panel manufacturers so that you can decide which ones are most likely to fit within your budget.

Solar Panel Brand Average Cost Per Watt ($-$$$$$)
LG Solar $$$
Canadian Solar $$
JA Solar $$
Mission Solar $$
Panasonic $$
Q Cells $$
REC $$$
Silfab $$$
SunPower $$$$$
Tesla $$
Trina Solar $$$

Ready to get a quote for a customized solar panel system and see what going solar will cost for your home? Select one of our top providers below and we’ll have a reliable and pre-vetted solar installer in your area reach out to you right away.

Read More About Going Solar

FAQs: Solar Panel Cost Minnesota

Here are the most common questions we see from homeowners in Minnesota who are looking to go solar. If you have specific questions that aren’t answered here, reach out to our team of solar experts at solar@ecowatch.com.

Blog author image

Karsten Neumeister

Solar Expert

Karsten is a researcher, editor, writer and energy specialist focused on environmental, social and cultural development. Before joining EcoWatch, Karsten worked in the solar energy sector, studying energy policy, climate tech and environmental education. A lover of music and the outdoors, Karsten might be found rock climbing, canoeing or writing songs when away from the workplace.