You have an environmental soul and a heart that is greener than an Irishman’s sweater on St. Patrick’s Day. Your vision of the future involves humanity ramping up its use of renewable resources to such an extent that oil and gas become mythical things of the past, and people cut their lawns exclusively with beautiful goats that roam from house to house throughout suburbia in visions of countryside bliss. It is a storm of perfect happiness.
Many people would agree that this picture, (or some form of it), is something the world needs to strive for in order for the Earth to be around for centuries to come. A few questions remain though, en route to getting there. One of them, in addition to where will we get all those goats, is, should you really power your house with energy from the sun?
Check For Shade
The decision to invest in a solar-powered home can be a big one. The sun is here with us for a long while. You could say that it is here to stay and so on that front, going solar is a solid bet, but you need to dive in further for a developed answer.
One of the most obvious questions you need to ask at the outset is, how much shade does my roof get? If your home lies tucked between two taller buildings and sees a great amount of shade for most of the day, investing in solar power may not be so rewarding.
If your location is full of sunny days- or even cloudy ones – it could be a good move.
Consider The Cost Of Electricity
According to Energysage.com, the key factor that drives consumers to invest in solar is the local cost of electricity. How high is your electricity bill? If you have to pay a large amount for solar panels to be installed on your roof but you also have a high electricity bill, you will see returns on your investment sooner. This can apply even if you live in a cloudy area.
Compared to sunny days, solar panels generate about 10% to 25% of their normal power output on cloudy days. In places like San Francisco, Energysage.com states this is still enough to make them worth the investment. Electricity costs are so high in this city, the investment still pays off.
Amazingly, even with all its infamous fog, San Francisco is one of the top five cities investing in solar, in the United States.
Find Out About Government Programs
What if your electrical bill does not make you sweat, though? Solar can still be a good investment. In some places, you do not actually need to worry about the high initial cost that often comes with investing in solar. Solar panels are expensive, and installing them and paying for their upkeep can be as well. Government programs that support solar homes are in place in some areas, however, and these can offset your initial investment.
In the city of Denver, for example, homeowners can take advantage of community solar initiatives, net metering programs, tax exemptions for renewable energy equipment, property tax exemptions, and mortgage incentive programs. These can all add up to great savings that can make installing solar panels on your home almost cost-free.
- San Francisco is one of the top 5 cities investing in solar panels.
- In Denver, you can get tax exemptions for installing solar panels on your home.
- Solar panels do not generate electricity at night, but do on cloudy days.
Do your research and see what applies in your area. It could be a superb choice.