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Do Solar Panels Actually Save You Money?

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Written by Shiyamala

In October 2022, The Pew Research Center shared data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration reporting that residential solar power installations rose by 34% from 2.9 gigawatts in 2020 to 3.9 gigawatts in 2021. That translates to an additional 500,000 new residential solar panel systems being put on roofs last year.

One primary driver for choosing to invest in solar panels is the savings potential, especially when you consider new legislation and investments focusing on renewable energy. A key provision in this legislation includes a 30% solar tax credit to encourage Americans to adopt solar energy in the next decade.

Have you considered investing in one of the top and most trusted solar systems in the Midwest or across the U.S.? If so, you probably want to ensure that you will actually save money. While you might love the idea of reducing your home’s and family’s carbon footprint, you also need to consider your financial health and how such an investment might affect it, good or bad.

Let’s look closer at the potential savings solar panels offer you as a homeowner.

Do Solar Panels Bring Savings?

Getting straight to the point, solar photovoltaic (PV) panels will save you money, as long as you do the proper research and planning and work with a reputable solar panel installation company that will help optimize your home and system for peak energy production, which is the foundation for saving you money over time.

Besides, any time you invest in your home, it feels more personal and rewarding. And there is no doubt that investing in solar panels is a worthwhile investment in your home. Each time you put money back into your home, you increase its value over time.

Further, you are likely to enjoy energy cost savings each month, especially if your traditional electricity bill is $75 per month or more. The reason solar energy is so much more affordable — outside the purchase and installation costs — is that the sun is a renewable natural resource.

Finally, when it is time to sell your home, you are likely to reap great financial rewards at that time. It’s always important to focus on adding value to your home to maintain a high property value while you live there and for the time when you prepare to sell and move on.

Zillow reports that homes with solar panels sell for up to 4.1% more than comparable homes without solar systems.

How Much Do Solar Panels Save in Illinois and the Midwest In General?

According to a December 2022 report from Solar Reviews, the average Illinois solar panel cost was between $9,0331-$11,038. After adding in the federal tax credit, reducing the bill by 30%, the average cost of a solar system in Illinois comes to $10,781. Customers manage to pay for their solar installation in 5.4 to 6.6 years and are likely to save an average of $42,407-$51,830 over 25 years.

Not surprisingly, the Prairie State is considered an excellent place to install solar panels for great savings, thanks to the available federal tax rebate, net metering, the solar renewable energy credit program and highly trusted local solar companies.

How Long Will It Take You to Recoup Your Investment?

Regardless of where you live in the U.S., you will recoup your solar panel installation at some point. It might depend on where you live and how much you spend initially. If you are able to buy your solar panels at the low cost available for Illinois homeowners, you can pay off your investment in five to seven years, depending on your available funds and determination to close out the loan.

After that, you’ll get to enjoy your solar investment to the fullest, not worrying about electricity bills. Even better, you might be able to feed power back into the utility grid and get paid for it — so you’ll not only enjoy the benefits of the federal tax credit and using a renewable resource, but you might profit from it all.

However, if you live in an area with a higher installation cost, such as those starting at around $26,000, it will take at least 12 years to break even. But again, once you have paid for your solar panels, everything beyond that becomes a savings bonus.

To avoid the higher-end solar panel installation costs, make sure to do your research and shop around for the best possible deal in your area. While you might live in an area that demands higher costs, there is always the chance you will stumble on a company offering lower rates.

Can You Enjoy Solar Panel Savings in Your Home?

Solar energy has the power to heat your home as long as it gets plenty of sunlight, which depends on a few key factors:

  • Your geographic location, such as a western U.S. state or a state where you are near highly professional and skilled local solar panel experts
  • Your home’s position, ideally south-facing and offering the longest exposure to the sun daily
  • Your property or neighborhood, with no tall trees or buildings that obstruct sun exposure to your home’s solar panels

Solar panels and solar panel systems are no longer a novelty, and there is little question that making this investment can save you and your family money in the short and long term. You’ll get to enjoy your own savings and know you are investing in an endlessly renewable alternative energy that is helping to reduce people’s carbon footprint, providing a quarter of a million U.S. solar industry jobs and counting, raising property values and so much more.

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