Have you been thinking about outfitting your home with solar energy? With solar panels, inverters, and battery banks, you can run your entire home off of the power of the sun.
Of course, investing in this form of renewable energy will be fairly expensive. The question you need to answer is if the value solar energy brings to your life is worth the cost? Is it worth it to go green?
We think the answer is an obvious yes, but we don’t just expect you to take our word for it. Keep reading to learn about the top benefits of switching to a green, renewable energy source.
Fossils Fuels Are Running Low
First, it’s important to recognize the way of things. The world is running out of fossil fuels. These are the primary sources we use to create energy.
Scientific data suggests that we have 70 years left of coal, 40 years left of gas, and 30 years left of oil. Just as importantly, as these resources continue to run out, they will become more expensive commodities. Gas prices in our country are already at an all-time high.
Eventually, we’ll have no option left but to rely on using renewable energy. If you choose to go green now, you’ll be several years ahead of the curve.
Reduce Your Energy Costs
One of the most valuable benefits of going green is the immediate energy savings you’ll enjoy. The average American pays $115 a month on energy bills.
If you transition your entire home to run off of solar energy, you can eliminate this monthly expense. It may not seem like a lot, but think about how much money that will save you over just 10 years.
The total comes out to almost $14,000. That’s probably enough to break even on your whole solar system, and that’s not accounting for any of the other financial benefits yet.
Take Advantage of Federal Tax Savings
Currently, the federal government is offering a 26% tax credit based on your solar costs. They recognize the importance of going green and are willing to reward homeowners who take the initiative.
To put things into perspective for you, if you spend $16,000 on a solar energy system capable of powering your entire home, you could get up to $4,160 back on your taxes. That reduces your costs to under $12,000.
Gain Access to State Solar Incentives
The federal government isn’t the only entity that provides solar incentives. Depending on where you live, switching to solar energy can provide you with a whole host of financial benefits.
For example, if you opt for a solar installation with Blue Raven in Florida you can enjoy a 6% sales tax exemption on your solar system. Most states also give you a property tax exemption based on the amount of value the solar system adds to your home.
There are net metering programs in which you can sell unused energy back to the power companies. Then, on cloudy days or months with low sunlight, you can use these credits to power your home through the city or county for free. Some net metering programs even pay cash based on the amount of power you generate throughout the year.
Some states offer low-interest loans to encourage people to invest in solar energy. They provide loans at below-market rates for people who want to go green and update their homes with renewable energy. Finally, some states have rebate programs where you can report your costs and get cashback.
Make a Positive Difference
One of the most important reasons for going green is that the planet desperately needs it. As noted earlier, our primary means of creating energy have been burning fossil fuels. While effective, the consequences of this energy production can be seen through the endless effects of climate change.
The progressive increase in our temperatures has led to the destruction of ecosystems. This gives certain species of plants and animals less space to live, and in some cases, results in their extinction.
The human race is not immune to climate change, either. We are experiencing shorter growing seasons and longer periods of drought. This means less crop production and higher prices for food.
By switching to a clean, renewable energy source, you can do your part to save the environment. The more people who switch over to solar, the sooner our planet will heal and continue to take care of us.
Increase Your Home’s Value
Did you know that installing a solar energy system can increase your home’s value up to 4.1%? For reference, if your home is already worth $325,000, adding solar will boost your home’s value to $338,325.
Even if you’re not planning on selling your home anytime soon, the added equity in your home can benefit you. For example, you can use the equity to take out a HELOC to invest in more home improvements.
If you do end up selling your home, solar energy is a major selling point for most buyers. Your home will be more competitive on the market and you’ll be able to ask for more money.
And as noted earlier, many states have a property tax exemption. You won’t have to pay more on your property taxes based on the amount of value added by solar.
Take Your Home Off the Grid
Finally, when you go green and invest in solar energy, you can take your home off the grid. This is ideal for people who buy or build homes in more remote areas. It’s much more affordable and practical to outfit the home with solar than to pay for power lines to be brought to your property.
However, even as someone living in the city, being off-grid is a good thing. You’ll be less dependent on the local power companies and immune to blackouts and power outages. Yet, by remaining connected, you’ll have a backup source of power during months of low sunlight, cloudy days, etc.
Ready to Go Green?
Between your energy savings, financial benefits, and your effort to save the environment, there are plenty of reasons to go green. Are these benefits worth the costs? Only you can make that decision.
We hope we provided you with the information you need to make the right choice. And if you’re looking for more homeownership advice, home improvement tips, or renewable energy insight, we’re here for you. Take a look through the rest of our blog before you go.