Are you thinking about a sun-powered home, but hung up on residential solar panel costs? If so, you’ve come to the right place.
While the easiest and most accurate way to find out how much solar panels will cost is to schedule a free solar consultation, we’ll cover the basics here.
Let’s talk nickels, dimes, and what it’s going to really cost you to go solar. Now, don’t be surprised, but the price tag on solar is not a one-size-fits-all type of deal. Before understanding the true cost of going solar for your household, it’s important to evaluate a few key questions:
- How much energy does your home use?
- Are electricity prices rising?
- How much sunlight does your roof get?
- What is the price of equipment and installation?
- Which solar incentives are available to you?
1. Energy consumption: how much energy does your home use?
First things first, let’s talk about energy consumption. Electricity powers many of the things American households have grown accustomed to ― like refrigerators, washing machines and central air conditioning units. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, “More than half of energy use in homes is for heating and air conditioning.”(1)
So, how much energy does your household use? Taking a peek at your electric bill could provide a snapshot of your home energy use. Or, you could get this information by chatting with a Solar Energy Specialist during a free solar consultation with ADT Solar.
If your family uses a lot of energy, it could affect how large your solar installation might need to be (and how many solar panels you’ll need to purchase). Taking these factors into consideration could impact the overall residential solar panel cost. The more energy generation you want, the more solar panels you’ll need.
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2. Electricity prices: are electricity prices rising?
Yes, electricity prices are rising.(2) That’s why electricity rates are the second thing you want to take into consideration.
For solar to truly be beneficial to your home, you want to make sure it can actually offset the cost of your electric bills. In 2022, it’s predicted that U.S. electricity prices will gradually rise to an average of 14.36 cents(3) per kilowatt-hour (kWh).
Whether it’s natural disasters or the power grid’s ability to keep up with electricity demand, all of these factors could cause a rising electricity bill.(4) It boils down to our ability to obtain the resources needed to generate power.(5) Consequently, the current electricity rates tend to reflect the success or failure of that task.
Typically, electricity prices vary by state. A few states have prices that are well above the national average. However, some states are well below. It’s helpful to understand your electric company’s net metering standards. Your location and the electricity rates will have an effect on the number of solar panels you should install and, ultimately, the cost.
It’s also helpful to understand your electric company’s net metering standards. All of this will have an effect on the number of solar panels you should install to cover your electric needs.
3. Sunlight exposure: how much sunlight do you need for solar panels?
Sunlight exposure is the measure of how much sun your house (or, rather, your roof) gets during the day. Calculating sun exposure is broken down into three different factors:
- Roof Size and Type: It might seem like a no-brainer, but the size of your roof matters. With a bigger roof that has enough space for more solar panels, there’s a better chance that you could receive more sunlight. Subsequently, you’ll have access to more clean, renewable energy generation for your home.
- Roof Orientation: The optimal direction for your roof to face is towards the south. Although your solar panels can capture sunlight from any angle, the southern direction is best for solar power generation. If most of the space on your roof is facing towards the south, that means you may need fewer solar panels to generate the amount of electricity that you would like to produce. If your roof doesn’t face south, there are still options that could work for your home.
- Shade: Although most people have a tree or two in their yard, when it comes to solar panels, less shade is best. Because solar panels need direct sunlight to generate electricity, too much shade could lower your solar panel’s efficiency.(6) This will keep them from producing power from your home, and may potentially lower your savings. In some cases, a solution to shading could be simply trimming branches.
Since the amount of sunlight your roof has access to impacts how many solar panels your home will need, it’s safe to say this factor also contributes to solar panel cost.
4. Price of equipment and installation: how much do solar panels cost?
Your location, access to sunlight and shade, personal energy consumption and many other factors play a role in determining the cost of solar panels for your home. Solar system size is dependent on these factors, as well as the equipment needed and installation costs.
A solar energy system is only as good as its panels and equipment. We provide homeowners with high-quality, high-efficiency solar panels from brands like Q Cells and Silfab Solar that will last for the long haul. Enphase’s innovative line of microinverters and whole-home batteries are the perfect complement to ADT Solar’s 148 years of rock-solid reliability.
5. Incentives: are solar incentives available in 2023?
You should definitely factor in the solar incentives that are available to you when considering the cost of going solar.
When you schedule a consultation, your Solar Energy Specialist will take into account any available incentives that can help you cover the cost of solar panels.
A big solar incentive is the Federal Solar Tax Credit (also known as the ITC). It could apply a 30% tax credit to any qualified rooftop solar system if installed by December 31, 2032. In addition to the federal solar tax credit, many states and local utility companies also offer solar incentives. For instance, there might be a net metering program available from your electricity provider. Net metering is great because if your panels produce more electricity than your home actually uses, the excess will be rolled back to your utility company. And you’ll be granted some credits on your bill.
For more information about which solar incentives are available in your area, schedule a free solar consultation with one of our Solar Energy Specialists. We’ll help you understand the true solar panel cost as it relates to your home.
For a 2,000 square foot house, around 16 to 25 premium solar panels will supply 100% of your home’s electricity needs. Again, discuss this with a Solar Energy Specialist in your area.
Here are a few things to be on the lookout for when getting a quote from solar companies.
The price for your solar panel system will vary depending on your home’s energy needs and if you want to provide your home with 100% solar energy. It also varies based on the type of panel you plan to purchase.
A very rough estimate for a typical 1,500 square foot home in the U.S. would include covering around $100/month for an average electric bill. This would mean between 15 and 18 solar panels.
That depends on your home! The price of solar panels varies widely depending on how many solar panels you’ll need to meet your home’s energy consumption.
It’s also important to consider the quality of the product. You should invest in the brands that have higher solar panel efficiency and come with longer warranties. At ADT Solar, we believe in our products so strongly, we back them up with our own warranty.
Another expense to factor into the installation price is the permits needed to get solar panels added to your home. However, if you choose a good solar company, they should take care of this for you.
Ready to see how much you could save with solar? Find out with our solar calculator.
Why choose ADT Solar?
There are a lot of factors that could influence your final solar panel cost, which can be confusing. However, the key takeaway is knowing that the price is truly specific to your home and your needs.
The good news is, you don’t have to go through it alone. A consultation with ADT Solar offers a snapshot into every area you need to understand before making the decision to go solar. Homeowners from all over the country have trusted ADT with their home security, and now you can trust us with your home solar power.
For more information, check out our blog to see what you can expect at your solar consultation.
ADT Solar is here to help you go solar with minimal stress. We provide the highest level of customer service, so you can rest easy knowing that your solar panel installation is in good hands.
You may be wondering what happens when an ADT Solar Energy Specialist visits your home. If you’ve been considering solar, we understand you may want to know what to expect before booking your free consultation. This is why we created this handy guide of what to expect at your solar consultation. First things first: we…
1. Energy use in homes, U.S. Energy Information Administration
2. During 2021, U.S. retail electricity prices rose at fastest rate since 2008, U.S. Energy Information Administration
3. Short-Term Energy Outlook, U.S. Energy Information Administration
4. What is behind soaring energy prices and what happens next?, IEA.org
5. Factors affecting electricity prices, U.S. Energy Information Administration
6. Do solar panels work in shade?, EnergySage