Are you thinking about using solar energy to power your home? If solar interests you, but you’re unsure of the cost, we have great news! In Houston, solar incentives make going solar more affordable. Incentives can help you save money in different ways, from offering a credit on your federal taxes to giving you cash or credit towards your electric bill. Let’s break down the tax credits and exemptions, rebates, potential home value increase and net metering programs available to homeowners who get solar panels in Houston.
1. The Federal Solar Tax Credit
One of the most attractive reasons to go solar is the Federal Solar Tax Credit. It allows homeowners with an eligible solar panel system to claim a credit worth 30% of the cost of their system on their federal taxes*. Also referred to as the residential clean energy credit, this incentive is part of the Inflation Reduction Act. In addition to the equipment in a standard solar panel system, you can also claim a tax credit for the cost of a solar battery backup.
The state of Texas doesn’t offer a state solar tax credit, due to the lack of state income tax. This makes the Federal Solar Tax Credit a great opportunity for Houston homeowners to get a credit at the federal level.
2. Net metering and solar buyback programs
Some Houston utility providers offer net metering or solar buyback programs. Not all do, so we recommend finding out if one of these programs is an option with your utility company. While the two incentives have some similarities, there’s a distinct difference that sets them apart from each other.
If you participate in net metering, you can earn credit towards your next electric bill by “selling” the surplus energy generated by your solar panel system to your utility provider based on the retail rate of electricity at the time you send it into the grid**.
Solar buyback programs use different prices for electricity you bring in from the grid and energy you send out to the grid. The homeowner is charged the retail price for electricity, but is paid a lower rate for the extra solar energy their system produces. You could get credit or cash for sending excess solar power to your utility company if a solar buyback program is available to you. While the form of compensation depends on the terms of the buyback program, it’s rare to find a utility provider that offers cash payments.
3. Increased home value
Going solar in Houston might just raise the value of your home. Homes for sale with a solar panel system are 24.7% more likely to sell over asking price and spend 13.3% less time on the real estate market, according to a Rocket Homes survey. (1) Keep in mind that the dollar amount of the increase, if there is one, depends on factors like your local real estate market.
If your property value does increase, you get to enjoy the benefits without getting hit with additional property tax. This is thanks to the next Houston solar incentive that we’ll discuss, below.
4. No property taxes on solar energy systems
The increase that a solar energy system could add to your home’s value won’t be included in its property value assessment, as stated by the Texas property value code1. There’s no state property tax in Texas. Property tax in Texas is assessed and administered at a local level. For this reason, you’ll need to complete an application for the tax exemption and file it with the appraisal district in which the property is located. (2)
5. Solar panel rebates in Houston
Several utilities and local governments offer Houston solar rebates to homeowners who go solar. Rebates depend on conditions like solar panel system size, production level and location of the home. An ADT Solar Energy Specialist can help you figure out if any solar rebates are available in your area. Give us a call at 866-450-1012 to schedule your free consultation.
6. Texas solar rights laws
If you live in a community that’s regulated by a Homeowners’ Association (HOA), you might wonder if they can prevent you from installing a solar panel system on your roof. The short answer is no, HOAs can’t deny solar panels in Texas.
Texas Property Code 202.010 offers protection for homeowners, stating that HOAs aren’t allowed to include or enforce provisions within their regulations, covenants or by-laws that prohibit or restrict homeowners from installing a solar energy device. (3)
However, your HOA can regulate the installation of solar panels in certain situations and designate where on the roof the panels are placed. You could possibly get around this interference by proving that the HOA’s designation negatively affects the performance of the solar panels.
While you might have to meet some stipulations, your HOA can’t stop you from installing a solar panel system.
And don’t worry, you won’t have to work through HOA regulations alone! A qualified solar installer can help you navigate your HOA’s solar regulations to make sure your system is installed in compliance with your HOA’s requirements2.
Schedule your Houston solar installation with ADT Solar
ADT Solar is committed to helping homeowners make the most of Houston solar incentives. One of our knowledgeable Solar Energy Specialists will be with you every step of the way. We can even handle all the necessary paperwork, like permits and HOA requests, on your behalf. The one exception is your tax form, which we can’t fill out or submit for you.
As the lucky recipient of about 204 days with sunshine per year (5), Houston is an ideal place to take advantage of the benefits solar offers and the incentives that can make going solar more affordable.
And when you choose ADT Solar as your installer, you get the reassurance of an established company, many years of experience and the following industry-leading warranties and guarantees:
- 25-year labor warranty
- 25-year Power Production Guarantee3
- 25-year panel manufacturer warranty
- 25-year Enphase microinverter warranty
Reach out to us to speak with a Solar Energy Specialist about Houston Texas solar incentives and to learn more about going solar.
**Net metering and similar excess or buyback programs vary by location and utility provider and are subject to change. Rates may go up or down and the money you may save, if any, may vary. For more information about rates, contact your power company.
1 Tax and credits or incentives including those provided by federal, state, or local governments may change or end. This can impact the amount of money you might save.
2 ADT Solar assists with securing approvals from homeowners’ any other property associations as a courtesy. ADT Solar is not responsible for obtaining authorizations from homeowners’ associations, or planning, zoning, architectural, or historical preservation commissions.
3 Beginning 12 months after the date your system is operational and continuing for 25 consecutive years, for each 12-month period, ADT Solar guarantees that your system will generate at least 95% of the annual estimated production for that 12-month period, after accounting for degradation at the rate of .33% per year. If your system does not produce the guaranteed amount for any 12-month period, and you notify ADT Solar within 2 years of the end of the applicable 12-month term, ADT Solar will pay $.10 per kWh of the difference between your system’s actual production and the guaranteed production for that 12-month period. “Actual production” means the amount of electricity produced by your particular system, which is calculated using data provided by the system or an estimate prepared by ADT Solar.