Is Everyone Going Solar?

It’s the hot topic this summer.  Everywhere we look, solar companies are advertising, questions are running rampant on Facebook & next door about which company and what brand to use.  In case you are wondering WHY solar is suddenly so popular, it boils down to a time crunch based urgency (properly) created right now.

How It Will Effect Your Wallet

The federal tax credit expires at the end of 2016.  This is an actual 30% credit off of the purchase price, which serves as a large incentive to take the step towards purchasing your solar energy up front.

Locked in energy rates:  Nothing like dreading your SDGE bills in the summer time.  Instead of sweating through all of your clothing and pajamas in fear of “the SDGE bill,” many opt to use their air conditioning a little more liberally by locking in their energy rate at $.17/KW hour.  This is the rate non-solar owning homeowners pay for the first 100% of their baseline energy during the bill cycle.  From there, the rates climb up 2 (just updated as of September 2015!) additional tiers until that bill comes.  Rather than paying around $.39/HW hour for the 3rd tier of your bill, you can turn on the air for a guaranteed energy rate for the next 20 years.


* SDGE Scheduled Changes:

  • September 2015: Consolidation from 4 to 3 tiers
  • Spring 2016: Consolidation from 3 tiers to 2 tiers
  • 2017: 2 tiers + “Super User” electric surcharge
  • 2019: Time-of-use Rates
  • Check out more details http://www.sdge.com/tiered-rates

SDGE is a business that is losing money due to homeowners purchasing solar panels.  They constantly raises their rates.  And even if you take out a loan to buy solar panels, you will STILL pay less each month than your current SDGE bill.

* Monthly minimum fee is increasing; end of year refund disappearing:  SDGE currently charges a $5 per month minimum fee for solar customers, and will give you money back at the end of the year if you produce more than you use.  In February 2016, they will up their monthly fee to $10 per month, and will no longer credit you back money for under production.

* Purchasing solar increases your home value, so you do get a return on your investment

* Take advantage of the tax credit this year:  get them ordered soon and you will have them installed before the 2015 tax year ends.  For those having a good financial year, this will save you between 5-20K.

This content is not the product of the National Association of REALTORS®, and may not reflect NAR's viewpoint or position on these topics and NAR does not verify the accuracy of the content.