Energy prices seem to increase every year. All it takes is one unusually hot summer or cold winter and your electricity bill can soar to $500 or more for one month. You may have considered other ways of generating energy, such as solar panels, but you may wonder how much are solar panels for your home. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer, but you can estimate solar panels prices for your home based on the amount of electricity you use and the size of your home.
To determine the cost of residential solar panels, begin by looking at your last electric bill. You need to determine how many kilowatt hours you use on average. This is listed on your bill, as well as the kilowatt hours that you used in the past few months. Then, choose a solar panel system that matches your needs.
The cost of home solar panels depends on the size of the system that you need. As of June 2011, one company offered a medium-sized system capable of generating 480 KWh per month for approximately $9,000 before the state rebates and tax incentives. Once these were factored in, the actual cost of the system was around $6,000 plus the cost of installation.
The current federal tax credit is 30 percent of the cost of home solar panels. You will receive that back as a refund on your next year’s taxes. Some states offer an additional rebate per KWh generated, and many larger cities offer additional incentives. Check first and make sure that the grid in your location allows you to feed the extra energy you create back into the grid and make a profit.
You also must factor in the cost of labor to determine the cost of residential solar panels. How much the installation of the system will cost depends on the size of the panels and your home. In some cases, installation can double the cost of the system. Call local contractors who are experienced with installing solar panels for an estimate.
Once you have determines the cost of solar panels for your home, you can create a budget and begin planning to purchase and install the panels. You will save money on energy, and eventually the solar panels will pay for themselves. You will also have the satisfaction of knowing that you are using green energy that does not put strain on the environment.