Diane Sheehan https://www.ecowatch.com 2m 595
The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
Replacing a roof can be a stressful home improvement decision and for many homeowners, it can be a great time to consider adding solar. However, with the high upfront costs associated with solar panel installation can be hard to determine if it’s worth it for every home.
Depending on where you live and how much sun your state or area receives can be a determining factor that effects your decision greatly. You may also be satisfied with your current electric bill and if it looks like it comes at under $100 a month, you may be fine where you are at. However, imagine receiving a bill of less than $10 a month which is usually possible with solar panels. It may also be helpful in understanding your exact electrical costs every month.
Deciding on solar panels is not a decision to take lightly as there are some upfront costs but the savings over the lifetime of your home can be astronomical, including taking into account that you are after making an eco-friendly impact and offsetting the carbon emissions of you and your family, which would be equivalent to the cutting down of 3 – 5 trees a month on average and oftentimes in the summertime, up to 10 or 11 trees, if you did not have solar panels.
If you are after saving money in the long run, buying solar panels outright is the better option than leasing. If leasing, costs may simply “even out” and while it looks great on paper at first, you may just end up paying as much if you had an electric bill. The final costs of an electrical bill after owning solar panels averages between $8 and $30 a month, even with all electrical devices plugged in.
Over the course of 25 years, this is a savings of up to $35,000 – $40,000, or $1,400 to $1,600 a year, in electrical costs. While the upfront costs are usually around $17,000 to $25,000 for buying solar panels, there would still be a savings of around $18,000. In addition, while most people might not even think about it or take it into consideration, there are labor costs associated with installing solar panels. In other words, you are helping your local community because you are keeping several people employed by going with solar panels. It might not sound like a big deal, but it usually means that someone can pay their rent or feed their family because of your decision.
Consider the fact that if you and your spouse work from home, increasing your electrical consumption at home, there would be an absolute benefit to getting solar panels. There are also some states, counties, and electrical companies that are willing to buy back the energy you didn’t use in the form of tax credits. Sometimes this is a one-time tax credit but there may also be alternative which may be claimed in other incentives.
The decision on getting solar panels also means that you should have an idea of how long you might consider living in your home, although there may certainly be some benefit when selling your home with solar panels on it. There are many benefits to solar panels, not only to your family, but in having a safer and lesser impact on the environment. Our team at EcoWatch created a guide that breaks down what makes a homeowner a good candidate for solar energy.
Our guide includes:
- Cost of solar panels vs. the cost of doing nothing
- How to determine your savings with solar
- How long solar panels last
To access our more in-depth article, read on:
Are Solar Panels Worth It? Our Honest Take (2022)