Solar Systems as an Investment

The demand for more efficient homes with renewable energy systems will likely remain a healthy trend further increasing the future value of your solar home.

A 1998 “Appraisal Journal (Cited by Wells Fargo) sited that for every $1,000 saved in annual utility expenditures a home’s value increases by $20,000. For every dollar saved in utility costs becomes available to be spent on a higher mortgage payment without a net increase in living expenses.

The table below from an American Solar Energy Society (ASES) study shows the approximate cost for a 100% energy consumption system in comparison to the increased appraisal value.  This example compares a home with utility bills averaging $190 per month, or a total of $2,280 in annual utility costs.

Solar Panel
System Size
Final Net Cost After
30% Solar Tax Credit *
Appraisal Equity
Increase @ 20:1
% Cost Recovered
2.6 kW $14,560 $17,600 121%
5.2 kW $29,120 $44,200 152%
7.8 kW $43,680 $72,600 166%

* Net cost calculated at rate of $8/W less 30% =$5.6/W installed

 

The economics of purchasing a solar electric system have radically changed in recent years.  The 15 year old article that this post was originally based on is just a benchmark in time.  The installed costs of $10/W were updated from the original article's installed cost down to $8/W several years ago, but now the cost of solar is under $5/watt for small residential systems and is under $4/w for mid-sized commercial projects, with large commercial/community/utility projects being delivered at or under $3/W.  At $10/W 15 years ago it was a good business practice to purchase solar systems, now that the installed cost is less than half this price. it’s a much better investment.

Visit Our Blog

Maine Technology Institute Seed Grant Award

February 26, 2009

Seed Grant Awardees Approved by MTI Board Project Summary Concentrating solar electric collector system Heliotropic Technologies, PA... More

Financing available for solar electric projects

July 4, 2013

Heliotropic Technologies has worked with Coastal Economic Interprises (CEI) to arrange for a low interest... More

Boothbay Harbor region businesses: We have secured special peak summer demand reduction incentives approved by the Maine Public Utilities Commission that will great reduce the cost of Solar electric systems.

March 1, 2013

CJ Spring heliotropics tech... More