2019 Solar Incentives in Vermont
Our mission is to make solar affordable and accessible to all. That means making sure people know about all the discounts and incentives available, so that we can build a brighter future, together.
Here’s what you need to know.
If you go solar before January 1, 2020, you can write off 30% of what you paid for solar on your federal taxes. Next year, that incentive decreases to 26%.
You’ll get paid for the power you produce. Your utility will ‘net-meter’ the power you send back into the grid, paying you 2 cents for every kW of energy your solar panels produce. This adds up to thousands of dollars over the lifetime of your system.
How to Save with Solar Incentives in Vermont
1. The federal tax credit
The federal tax credit, also called the federal income tax credit, remains at 30% for all systems installed in 2019. When this big refund check shows up, in your mailbox or direct deposit, it’s happy-dance time.
While this sizable credit has been a huge help for solar consumers, it is contingent upon a family’s tax liability. Basically, your tax refund is limited to what you pay in taxes over the course of a given year. The good news is, you may be able to use the credit over multiple years. We recommend speaking with your tax professional to see if you’ll be able to benefit from this tax credit.
The current phase-out schedule of the federal tax credit is:
For systems installed in
0% – no more credit
2. The state net metering incentive
The state net metering incentive for home solar is based on a law requiring public utilities to fairly credit solar customers for the energy that they add to the grid. For the first 10 years of a new solar system’s life, all the power it generates is credited at a premium rate. An extra 2 cents – often called the solar adder.
Adding 2 cents per kWh above the retail rate seems small, but home solar systems generate thousands of those kWh each year. That adds up to thousands of dollars in extra credits over the ten years.
Beware: This incentive just dropped from an extra 3¢ per kWh down to 2¢ on July 1, 2019. Fast forward a year and it may drop down to 1¢ per kWh.
Now is the time to go solar.
Solar incentives are on the decline. Take advantage of them!
The sooner you go solar, the more you save. Tax credits, rebates, and incentives can cover a really significant portion of the cost of going solar.
Bonus: New York Real Property Tax Exemption
If you’re going solar, you’re providing a net benefit to the grid, the state, and the planet as a whole. You’re also increasing the value of your property, because, hey, who wouldn’t want to live in a house with a negative electric bill? Normally, improvements like this would mean that you have to pay higher property taxes. Luckily, the state of New York thinks that the benefits of solar outweigh their need for your tax dollars.
The state provides a 15-year real property tax exemption for properties located in New York State with renewable energy systems as long as the jurisdiction the system is located in doesn’t opt-out. See if your jurisdiction has opted out here. (This law only applies to the value that a solar electric system adds to the overall value of the property. It does not mean that landowners with an installed renewable energy system are exempt from all property tax!)
Affordable Solar Program
Program available for low to moderate income level household (LMI) defined as a household with gross income at 80% or less of the median county income (80% AMI). For example, a 4-person household in Dutchess County bringing in less than $73,568 would qualify.
With this program an eligible household can double their NYSERDA Rebate up to 6 kW! That’s a pretty big incentive. The map to figure out eligibility is located here.