Although the greater Phoenix area receives an average of more than 300 sunny days each year, the state surprisingly gets 90% of its electricity from non-renewable resources. However, for those who are considering implementing solar energy as an Arizona homeowner, there are a lot of considerations to keep in mind before making the leap. From the financial benefits to the major benefits that solar energy has on the environment, here’s what you need to know.
How popular is solar in AZ?
When it comes to solar use on a national level, a mere 6% of US homeowners say that they have already installed solar panels, while another, larger number of people (46%) say that they have given serious thought to adding solar panels to their home this year. In Arizona specifically, however, the city of Phoenix is actually one of America’s Top Shining Cities, according to an annual report that measures solar power use in the United States by Environment America. What’s more is that Phoenix is the 4th city with the most solar photovoltaic (PV) installed, and is the 8th city in the country with the most solar PV installed per capita, highlighting just how prevalent the use of solar is. If you’re considering implementing the use of solar energy, however, here are a few things to consider both environmentally and financially.
The financial considerations
When looking into the financial aspect of adding solar panels to your home, there’s a lot to unpack. Aside from the pricey cost of the initial setup, there are actually financial incentives that make it easier and more appealing to invest in solar energy systems — including solar tax exemptions at both the state and local level. In Arizona, both solar property tax and solar sales tax are 100% exempt, which will aid greatly in making a solar investment affordable. Federal tax exemptions also apply, and are available to all Americans who decide to invest in solar power. For reference, the solar tax credit (also known as the ITC), is currently valued at 26%. This tax credit covers several key points, including the cost of solar panels, labor costs for installation, additional solar equipment, and energy storage devices. Though, it’s important to keep in mind that the federal tax credit is available to all homeowners to purchase a system outright or through financing with a solar loan — not to those who are leasing solar panels.
The environmental benefits of investing in solar panels for your home are unquestionably unmatched. Using solar, for example, minimizes the amount of both carbon and pollutants generated, according to the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. However, not only does solar energy reduce your carbon footprint and allow for a renewable and green source of energy over fossil fuels, but it can significantly reduce your energy bill in the process. Additionally, the low maintenance that is involved with solar panels after setup is ideal for homeowners who wish to “set it and forget it”, allowing it to do its job without much interference involved afterwards.
For homeowners in Arizona, switching to a renewable source of energy like solar via installing solar panels is a great option in both becoming more eco-friendly and reducing your energy bill. With tax exemptions at the federal and state level, there’s no question as to why solar is on the rise.