Is Solar Energy Expensive? The True Cost of Solar Energy
The exact number of American homes with solar power is ambiguous, but studies clearly indicate that solar energy is becoming more and more prevalent. Solar panels were first introduced as early as the beginning of the 19th century. Now, they are present everywhere from churches to even the White House. Perhaps you have thought about getting solar panels yourself, but feel hesitant because of the upfront cost. We've helped install the wiring for many solar panels over the years, so we know a thing or two about solar energy costs. That’s why we’ll be debunking the most common myth, that solar panels are too expensive, in this blog post.
The Initial Cost
At an average $11,000 to 14,000 cost of installation, solar energy is undoubtedly initially more expensive than traditional methods. However, a federal solar tax credit will cut 30% off the total cost of the installation and even up to 50%, depending on the state you live in. You can check what kind of benefits your state offers you by going here.
There are multiple factors that determine the cost of solar energy installation for residential and commercial buildings in the short-term and the long-term. Based on where the building is located, where the solar panels are going to be installed, the types of racking selected, and the amount of solar panels required/purchased, solar energy may be more or less expensive than average.
These economic benefits don’t even take into account the savings you’ll reap once the solar panels are installed. Although the exact number depends once again, on the state you live in, the Energy Department conducted a study that found solar energy would save money for residents in 45 of 51 states.
If you’re still unsure about making the jump, waiting a few more years might be to your benefit. When solar panels were first made available for commercial use, it cost about $100 per watt (energysage). Now, that number is about $3.05, and will continue to decrease according to Investopedia.
The Long Term Cost Analysis
For a majority of cases, installing solar energy results in homeowners saving money. There are no long-term costs for solar panels; no upkeep is required, and panels are typically warrantied for 10-12 years. Modules are warranted for 25 years. On average, solar panels save $1346 per year on their energy bills (MarketWatch). Based on the savings, homeowners typically can 'make up' the cost of installing solar energy within 10 years, sometimes less depending on the rate negotiated between solar energy users and the utility company. To sum it up, solar energy is definitely worth the investment in the long run, especially considering increasing electrical costs as cheaper power sources go off line and electrical companies charging more for energy during the summer, when solar energy is most present.
Now that you have all the facts, are you ready to invest? Give us a call at 616.643.8287 if you have any more questions about solar panels.