Can Solar Panels Save You Money ?
When it comes to installing a home solar power system, it’s natural to immediately ask yourself, “How much is this going to cost? After all, it is considered by many homeowners to be a home improvement expense, similar to replacing a roof, adding a deck, or installing a pool.
However, installing a home solar system is distinct in one major way. With no up front costs, it actually starts making you money the minute you turn it on. Unless you charge admission to family and friends for using that new pool, solar power puts cash in your pocket from day one!
A better question to ask is, “How much money will installing solar panels put back in my wallet?”
Decrease Monthly Payments
First, let`s look at how an investment in a residential solar system can save you money in the short-term. Thanks in part to ever-decreasing solar equipment costs and sizes, homeowners can stop worrying about limited roof or yard space and focus on a baseline of significant savings.
For example, consider the concrete savings realized through reduced electrical bills.
According to recent statistics, the average New York household pays $113 a month, or approximately $1,400 a year, in residential electricity bills.
A residential solar system can cut your electric bills in half.
Stable Electricity Bill
In addition, solar energy provides you and your family with a stable, predictable monthly rate, immune from price fluctuations and rate hikes, allowing you to take comfort in consistent, simple utility budgeting. Given the threat of increasingly hot summers and harsh winters, homeowners will appreciate this financial stability and peace of mind.
Then there are the long-term benefits. A 2011 study — conducted long before the recent drop in overall solar installation costs — found that an average New York homeowner can save $31,166 over a 20-year time span. Again, individual savings will depend on your situation.
Research also indicates that a residential solar system can increase the property value of your home. A recent study from the Department of Energy`s Sunshot Initiative found that homebuyers are willing to pay a baseline of $15,000 extra for a home with a typical residential solar system and even more for larger installations.
What`s more, as we previously noted on our blog, according to another study through Sunshot, in over 90% of the 50 largest cities in America, a dollar spent on a solar panel installation will yield a better return than a dollar invested in the S&P 500, the stock index of the top 500 American companies. In fact, New York state ranked #1 overall for both first year cost savings and the value of a solar investment over a 25-year period compared to the S&P 500 index over a similar time frame.