The U.S. solar market grew 76% in 2012. Never in the past has solar power been this available for U.S homeowners.
What are the reasons why an assortment of homeowners are now choosing to go solar these days? Here is Energy Informative`s top 10 benefits of going solar:
Save Thousands of Dollars
Adding solar panels to your home can save you well above $100 in a handful of states. Extend this to two decades, less than the length of a general solar panel warranty, and this translates to over $30,000.
Begin Saving from Day 1
Solar purchase power agreements (PPAs) and solar leasing has made it opportunistic for homeowners to go solar for little or no money down.
Additionally, many homeowners decide to finance their solar panels with one of the “pay-as-you-go” financing options. This generally means that a third-party company – the solar provider – owns the solar system and takes care of installation, maintenance, monitoring and repairs.
You simply pay the solar provider for electricity – less than you would have paid the utility company.
Low Payback Period
If you choose to pay in cash, the payback period is in many cases less than ten years.
Increase Your Home Value
Buying a home with solar panels translates into lower electricity costs. Solar panels will increase a home`s appeal on the market, comparable to homes with low property taxes, homes in school districts and homes with great Home Energy Ratings (a measurement of an energy efficiency).
A study put together by National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) came to a conclusion that homes with solar panels sell 20% quicker and for 17% more money.
Take Advantage of Incentives
As of 2009, the $2,000 cap on the Federal Solar Tax Credit is lifted. You will get 30% of total system costs back (equipment and installation).
This means you would save $7,500 on a solar system worth $25,000. Combine this with state and local rebates, Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SRECs), and total costs can cut down the middle. Take advantage of incentives while they last.
Solar Is A Safe Investment
The utility companies are known for their fluctuating and unreliable electricity prices. With solar panels and simple math, we can calculate how much electricity will be generated, and most crucially, at what price, for at least the next 20 years (fixed energy costs).
Solar panel manufacturers include a 20- to 25-year warranty (also known as a performance guarantee) with their solar panels. The industry standard guarantees 80% performance after 25 years.
The real lifespan of solar panels is much longer – your solar panels will likely generate a decent amount of electricity 30-40 years down the line.
Save The Environment
We know that a huge percentage of homeowners choose to go solar because it makes good sense from a financial point of view. That being said, the environmental benefits are also clearly worth noting.
The U.S. places second in the world in annual carbon dioxide emissions at 17.9%, right behind China. You can go a long way in lowering your carbon footprint by replacing utility power with clean electricity from solar panels.
Create Energy Independence
The U.S. relied on net imports for about 40% of the petroleum (crude oil and petroleum products) that we consumed in 2012.
You can help to lower U.S. dependence on foreign energy. We will inevitably run out of oil, coal and natural gas.
While we continue our consumption of these increasingly expensive and dangerous energy source, our national security and economy suffers. Nonetheless, solar is one step in the right direction.
Solar Is Effortless
Shopping for solar used to be a long and complexed process. There are hundreds of solar companies in the U.S. alone. It would take you weeks to discover the best solar deal. Fortunately for you, things have altered for the better. To go solar has never been more seamless then it is nowadays