Are Solar Panels Worth it?

Chances are you’ve seen them, whether it be on your neighbors roof or on the roof of a large business. Solar panels are becoming very common in the United States due to the simple fact that they harness energy from the sun and help cut down energy use. Less energy use equates to saved money which is very appealing to the average home owner.

In addition to helping save home or business owners money, what else do solar panels offer? A study by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory found that consumers are willing to pay more for a home with solar panels installed. This means that solar panels increase your home or business value. Additionally, solar panels are one of the improvements that can be made to a home or business that can pay for itself in a matter of years. Solar panels also generally come with some sort of tax break or rebate because they are environmentally friendly.

The biggest question when determining whether installing solar panels are worth it for your home or business is to evaluate the cost of the solar panels against the savings you will receive. In terms of purchasing a solar system for your home or business, there are generally 3 options.

  • Buy the system upfront or get a loan to purchase it: with this option you can see 100% of the utility savings once the cost of the investment is covered. Using a loan will take a longer time to see a savings as the loan will need to be paid back, however, this will still cut your energy bill.
  • Lease the solar panel system: with this option you will pay a monthly amount for the system and receive an amount of electricity in return. This will lower your current utility costs but you will not be able to g et any tax breaks or rebates with this option.
  • Power Purchase Agreement (PPA): this option is very similar to the current payment method you have arranged with your utility company. You simply pay for the amount of electricity you use. You will not own the solar panel system or make a down payment.

Whether or not a solar panel system is worth it depends completely on the type of purchasing option you would like to choose. No matter the option, solar panels help reduce energy use and save the home or business owner money. In order to get an estimate on solar panels for your home or business, there are a few web sites that can help get the process started. Check out Energy Sage or Solar-Estimate to start the process of getting an estimate on your solar panel system.