21 Dec How Much Does It Cost to Go Solar, Anyway?
How Much Does It Cost to Go Solar, Anyway?
It’s fun to daydream about the many home improvement projects we could take on, but when it’s time to consider starting a project, cost is one of the first questions. You want to know if the project is feasible or not, right? It’s no different when you’re considering solar for your home; you want to get an idea of costs up front. So how much does it cost to go solar, anyway?
We know this is the least satisfying answer possible, but “it depends” is also the most honest answer. We can (and will) give you an average, but after installing over 5,000 solar energy systems, we’ve found there is so much more than average when it comes to you and your home. Your solar energy system should be customized for your unique home, habits, and preferences. Let’s walk through some of the reasons “it depends” to give you a clearer picture of the average cost of going solar.
Average Cost of Solar Panel Systems
We know it’s helpful to have some reference point to start with, so let’s talk numbers and the average cost to go solar. According to a study by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), the 2017 benchmark price for an average home solar system would be $12,848 after current federal tax credits. But that average comes from across the country, and home solar systems come in many different sizes with different features and specifications. The point is that “average” doesn’t tell you how much solar will cost for your home.
The only way to find out what solar would cost for your home is to get a custom quote from a local solar installer. When you get a quote, the professional solar advisor will give a customized proposal that takes into account the specifics of you and your home. This is the best way to truly assess the cost of going solar and whether or not solar is right for you.
Are You Average?
Probably not! And that’s why the best answer to “how much does it cost to go solar?” is “it depends.” We know it’s not a satisfying answer, but it’s true. You probably don’t live in an average home with average energy consumption and average electricity costs. You probably are not looking for an average home solar system with average solar panels installed on your home by an average solar company.
Unfortunately, most online solar calculators are based on these ambiguously average homes and can’t accurately assess the cost and overall savings potential of solar for your home. We’ve checked many of them and found that they don’t provide accurate information, and in many cases are way off. A personalized proposal will look at many factors: the direction your roof faces, the pitch of your roof, the impact of any shading on production potential, your average electricity usage, energy outliers like hot tubs or electric vehicles, your aesthetic preferences, financing options, your financial goals, and more. You’ll get the maximum benefit from solar at the lowest cost with a customized proposal.
Variation by State and City
The average cost to go solar can also be misleading because costs vary by state and by city. For starters, each locality has a different potential for solar energy based on climate. On top of that, each state and city has different incentives or policies in place for solar. You can search the Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIRE) to see what is available in your state. Your city and your utility company will also have policies and potentially incentives in place for solar, and these factors will affect your final cost.
This is a lot of information to muddle through when attempting to understand how much it costs to go solar, and the complexity underscores the importance of finding a trusted professional to assess your home and goals to provide you with an accurate quote. Our solar advisors will be your resource in understanding local incentives, policies, and costs, and they will be aware of any upcoming changes that could affect your pricing.
How Much Does It Cost to Go Solar?
So in the end, how much does it cost to go solar? We can give you an average number, but it will depend on the many factors related to where you live, your home’s design, your energy usage, and your preferences for what type of solar installation you would like on your home. Just like any other home improvement project, there are many factors to consider and options to choose from. It’s important to have a solar professional you trust to help you make informed decisions and guide you through the process of going solar.
The Namasté Solar sales team does not work on commission; they work for you. If you decide to work with us, you’ll be working with an expert home solar advisor who will help you assess the cost and benefits of solar and then be your guide through the design, installation, and activation process. We have over 13 years of experience helping Colorado homeowners capture the money-saving benefits of solar. We would be happy to help you, too!
Start with a conversation to learn more about solar for your home and to see how much you could save.