Solar Panel Cost In 2023 (Homeowner’s Installation Savings Guide)
By Karsten Neumeister /
Here’s a quick look at the estimated cost of solar in North Dakota:
*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.
Solar panel systems in North Dakota cost an average of $2.42 per watt, which is significantly cheaper than the national average of $2.66. Most homeowners in ND need a system that is around 11 kilowatts to offset the average monthly electric bill of $113.1 That averages out to a total system cost of $26,620 before the 30% federal tax credit, or $18,634 after the credit.
The total cost of going solar in North Dakota is around the national average price, given that the per-watt cost is lower and the typical system size is larger.
System size, which is predominantly determined by your average monthly energy bill, is the most significant cost factor to consider. Every additional kilowatt you need in North Dakota will add approximately $2,420 to your total. The table below provides some typical system sizes for the area, along with average costs before and after the federal tax credit.
|Size of Solar Panel System||North Dakota Solar Panel Cost||Cost After Federal Tax Credit|
Want to see a list of the top solar companies in North Dakota that can install a high-quality, affordable system? Click here.
See also: See how much you can save by going solar with the EcoWatch Solar Calculator
As mentioned above, your energy needs and system size are the biggest cost factors when going solar in North Dakota. Most North Dakotans have a higher-than-average energy bill, so a system of around 11 kW is usually needed to power an entire home.
That said, if you have a more modest home that uses less energy, you may be able to get by with a smaller, more affordable system.
Aside from size, there are some other things that can swing the total cost of your renewable energy system up or down from the average. We’ll discuss three additional factors to consider below.
The solar equipment you choose to have installed can vary greatly in price, usually in relation to the overall quality, energy efficiency and brand. Some brands of solar equipment are more highly sought-after because of their efficiency and the energy savings they provide over time.
Some of the more costly but more valuable products include Maxeon/SunPower solar panels and Tesla Powerwall batteries. Opting for products like these will cost more upfront but can often pay for themselves in a shorter amount of time.
Although North Dakota sees roughly 200 days of sunshine a year, frequent snow and cloud cover may make investing in high-efficiency panels even more worthwhile.
Additionally, the pieces of equipment you choose to complete your home solar project can affect your total cost. Most residential solar systems include panels and inverters, but some North Dakota residents customize their setups with solar batteries for storing energy in case of power outages due to the state’s harsh weather.
Any equipment add-ons will naturally increase the upfront cost of going solar, sometimes by thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars.
Unfortunately, solar is a slow-going movement in North Dakota, so there aren’t a lot of state-funded financing options in the state.
However, there are still several ways to apply for a solar loan. Many solar companies in North Dakota will offer solar financing programs, whether in-house or through a third-party company they trust. Or, you could take out a home equity line of credit (HELOC) to fund your system.
Additionally, North Dakotans can also take advantage of many federal solar financing programs. For example, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has a Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) that extends to North Dakota agricultural producers.
The company you choose to complete your solar installation will affect your total cost. While there aren’t many solar installers in North Dakota, we recommend getting as many quotes as possible to find one that offers you the best deal.
Although options are limited, several regional companies also service the state. We’ve found the top solar companies servicing North Dakota include Lightning Solar, GenPro Energy Solutions, REAL Solar and Wind and Solar World.
Here’s an example of how solar installer quotes can differ: Lightspring Solar is known for its affordability and for working with customers to get suitable financing terms, but it offers limited warranty coverage for its products and has less than five years of experience in the industry.
Wind and Solar World is often a bit more expensive, but you’re paying for over a decade of experience in the industry. Well-established companies with more experience are also more likely to stay in business for the long haul, meaning you’ll have support for decades to come.
While the above factors will play the biggest role in the prices of solar installations in North Dakota, there are other considerations homeowners should be aware of before making the switch to clean energy.
With the average cost of solar panels in North Dakota topping $24,000, homeowners are pleased to find that the federal and state governments provide access to solar incentives to ease the financial burden of converting. Below, we’ll discuss the most appealing solar incentives available to North Dakotans.
|North Dakota Solar Incentive||How it Affects the Cost of Solar Panels in North Dakota|
|Renewable Energy Property Tax Exemption||Guarantees that your property taxes won’t increase from installing solar, even though the process bumps up your home value. Over time, this can lead to thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars saved, depending on your property taxes.|
|Sales and Use Tax Exemption for Electrical Generating Facilities||Allows homeowners to avoid sales tax on all solar equipment. With an average solar power system cost of $26,620 and an average sales tax rate of 5%, that’s a typical savings of $1,331.|
|Residential Energy Efficiency Rebates||Offered by 5 utilities in North Dakota. This won’t cover solar but will cover energy efficiency upgrades that solar contractors can carry out with an installation, ultimately saving the homeowner money in some cases.|
|Net Metering||Through net metering programs, homeowners can earn credits from their utility company for any excess generation by their solar panels. North Dakota’s net metering policy ensures these programs are available to all customers of investor-owned utilities, but it’s not mandated for customers of municipal utilities or electric cooperatives.|
|Local Solar Rebates & Incentives||Many municipalities and utility companies offer their own rewards for renewable energy systems. Be sure to check with your local government and power provider for any additional rebates or incentives.|
|Federal Solar Tax Credit||The federal solar investment tax credit (ITC) is a tax incentive that’s worth 30% of your total PV system installation and equipment costs. The credit will reduce to 26% in 2033 and 22% in 2034 before expiring in 2035.|
Typically, the higher the efficiency of the solar panel, the higher the cost. But a higher upfront investment usually translates into bigger energy savings over time.
While exact costs are hard to pinpoint, the table below gives you a relative idea of how the top solar panel brands compare to one another in terms of cost.
|Solar Panel Brand||Average Cost Per Watt ($-$$$$$)|
Want to know how much solar panels would cost for your North Dakota home? Select one of our top providers below to get connected to a vetted solar installer and get a free, no-obligation quote based on your home’s energy needs.
Read More About Going Solar
The EcoWatch team is happy to get questions about the process and cost of going solar in North Dakota daily. Below are some of the questions we see most often, along with comprehensive answers. If you have specific questions that aren’t answered here, reach out to our team of solar experts at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Solar panel systems in North Dakota typically cost $2.42 per watt, and the average system size required throughout the state is 11 kilowatts. Therefore, the average cost to install a solar panel system in North Dakota is $26,620 before the federal tax credit or $19,699 after the credit.
With that being said, your system can cost significantly more or less. The only way to get an accurate quote is to have a reputable solar installer assess your home and provide an estimate. The company should consider the equipment you want, how many kilowatt-hours of energy your home uses each month, the size of your home, the direction your roof faces, shading on your property, and more.
Yes! Provided you acquire your panels via cash purchase or solar financing, your property value will increase. Solar leases and power purchase agreements (PPAs) will not provide the same benefit.
If you use cash or a solar loan, data from Zillow estimates that your photovoltaic system will bump your property value up by around 4.1%.7 In North Dakota, where the average home value is $259,960, that’s a standard increase of $10,658!8
Solar leases do make panels more accessible for some people who need but cannot secure financing. However, it is almost unilaterally better to buy or finance solar panels than to lease them in North Dakota.
If you opt for a solar lease over a purchase, your property value won’t increase, which means you’re passing up an average of $10,658 in home value. Leases also won’t let you take advantage of the federal solar tax credit, which is another $6,921 you’ll be losing out on, on average. Solar leases also come with a much longer payback period and are less cost-effective over time.
Some companies in North Dakota advertise “free panels,” but free panels aren’t really free. This is a marketing tactic used by some companies to get you to sign a lease or power purchase agreement (PPA). Neither of these options is as appealing as a cash purchase or solar loan in most cases.
However, solar panels do typically pay for themselves over time. The average payback period in North Dakota is 13 years (assuming a cash purchase), which means your panels will essentially be free and even earn you money in the long run.
Yes, it is possible to eliminate your electric bills by going solar in North Dakota. It will be easiest to do so if your roof can support at least a 10-kW system and if you’re serviced by an investor-owned utility to take advantage of net metering and reduce electricity rates with overproduction. If not, you might need a solar battery to provide power through the night or on cloudy days. In any case, it is possible to reduce your electricity costs in ND to $0 per month with the right system.
Price will always be an important factor to consider, but most North Dakota residents quickly find that the efficiency of the panels they choose is more important. North Dakota gets plenty of suns but doesn’t have the best net metering laws. High-efficiency panels make it much more probable that you’ll eliminate your electric bills and save money over time by going solar.
Comparing authorized solar partners
Having trouble deciding? Click below and use our process to receive multiple quotes instead: