Solar Incentives in California

California Solar Incentives

If you’re a California homeowner and you’re looking to invest in solar energy, you’re in luck. Not only does California’s year-round sunshine provide the ideal climate, but home and business owners have a wide selection of incentives to choose from that makes going solar even more affordable. We’ve compiled some of the most beneficial solar incentives available to California homeowners below.


Federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC)

One of the largest incentives available to California homeowners is the Federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC).

From now until 2021, the federal government is offering a 26% investment tax credit against the total cost of a home solar system. In 2021, the value of the tax credit will lower to 22%. And after 2022, the tax credit for residential solar systems will end. To reap the benefits of this major incentive, you’ll need to act fast.

How does it work?

If you purchase your solar system outright, you can apply 26% of the total cost of your system installation to your tax liability for the year.

For example, if your solar panel system costs $17,000, a 26% tax credit would be $4,420. So, if you owe $4,000 in taxes for 2020, your tax bill will be reduced to zero and you’ll receive $420 in tax credits for your return.

Property Tax Exemption

If you’re wondering if your property taxes will increase if you install a solar panel system, the answer is no. Ordinarily, when you add something of value to your property, the addition is assessed at the current market value and added to the existing value of your property.

California offers a tax exemption for residential solar systems until the end of 2024. That means you won’t have to pay extra taxes if you install a solar power system.

California Solar Rebates

In California, utility companies and other local organizations offer rebates to homeowners who install solar systems on their property.

Some of the local rebates available:

  • Self-Generation Incentive Program (SGIP): Customers of PG&E, SCE, SoCalGas and SDG&E utilities are eligible to receive this rebate. The SGIP program offers rebates to California households for a solar battery and can be as high as $400 per kilowatt-hour. Keep in mind, the rebate amounts will vary depending on battery size and the time of purchase. Also, as more batteries are installed, the rebate amount will decrease.
  • Disadvantaged Communities – Single-family Solar Homes (DAC-SASH) Program: Running through 2030, the program will provide $8.5 million annually to customers who live in the top-25% most disadvantaged communities in the state and meet certain income qualifications.
  • Local Utility Rebates: Some local utility companies offer solar rebates centered on the estimated performance of the home solar panel system. Go Solar California lists electric companies that provide solar panels and/or solar battery storage incentive programs.

Speak with one of our solar professionals at 805-351-3371 to learn more about available solar rebates in your area.

Net Metering

Net metering is a statewide solar incentive that allows homeowners to benefit from every ounce of energy their solar panel system produces. Basically, if your solar panels generate more power than you use, you’ll be credited by your utility company toward future energy bills.

How it works:

During your solar panel installation process, you can choose to have your existing meter swapped out for a net meter. Net meters run backward when your system produces more energy than your home is using — storing credits for when your home is using more energy than your solar panels are producing.

In return, your electric company will give you credit for any excess electricity your panels produce. These credits can go towards paying for your next monthly utility bill.

At Photon Brothers, we know that everyone’s financial situation is different. That’s why our in-house financing team will work with you to find a plan that’s best suited for your unique needs. If you’re ready to see how much you can save by going solar, contact us today.

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