Solar power is emerging as an affordable, efficient energy source for homeowners, but it is far from being mainstream. If you’re interested in having solar panels installed, you probably don’t have many people to ask about the process. Instead, you’re left researching solar power on your own. While the internet is a great source for information, there is also misinformation. We hope to clear this confusion up as we address five important things to consider before moving forward with a solar panel installation.
Your Installation Options
Roof-mounted panels are most popular, but ground-mounted systems are worth a look, too. The advantage to ground-mounted panels is that they can be installed anywhere on the property. If you happen to have a roof that is small or facing north, you may benefit from a ground-mounted array. The drawback is that these systems are generally more expensive because they require more materials and labor.
Your Panel Types
You also have the freedom to choose the type of panel you want installed. Not all panels are the same. Some are more expensive but they are also more efficient. Paying a higher price on the front end can save you money in the long run. Always talk to the solar provider about the types of products used. AllSeason Solar uses top tier PV modules, microinverter technology, and roof flashings on our installations.
Your Financing Options
When you work with a solar provider, you can afford solar panels in one of two ways: lease or buy. Both have advantages and disadvantages.
Leasing is a great option when you don’t have the money to buy the panels, or you can’t qualify for a loan. The solar company owns the panels and you pay a small price to rent them. You are eligible to save money on your utilities by entering a power-purchase agreement.
Purchasing solar panels is more expensive, but you get the benefit of collecting the tax credits and rebates. If you don’t have the money upfront, you can take out a solar loan. Solar loans work like traditional loans since you’ll have a down payment and monthly payments.
If you rent your solar panels, all tax incentives and rebates will go to the solar company. If you decide to buy the panels, they will go to you. The Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit is the biggest opportunity to save money, as it offers a credit of 30% for qualified expenses. Aside from this tax credit, there are also state incentives and utility savings. You can find more information on the Database of State Incentives.
Your Solar Provider
Lastly, be sure to choose a reputable solar company. We recommend researching companies that are well-established, have excellent reviews, and offer reliable guarantees. For example, AllSeason Solar is one of New Jersey’s largest solar installers. We have a 25 Year Workmanship Guarantee, 25 Year Module Warranty, and 25 Year Microinverter Warranty. We also hold the NJ Electrical License and the NJ HIC License.
Solar panels are an excellent investment whether you choose to lease or buy them. For more information on your options and how to make owning a solar system affordable, call AllSeason Solar today!