Wisconsin solar 101: must read before you buy solar panels
Benefit from a PV system
4.38 hours of peak sunlight
Wisconsin is a reasonably sunny state – a PV system can substantially cut your electricity bills
3 years payback period
A solar power system in Wisconsin pays for itself a couple of times during its lifespan
Save money with Net Metering
The electricity you can’t consume can be put to good use. The utility will pay for it if you export it to the grid
Reduce the cost of your system by 26%
Get a quarter of the PV system cost off your taxes with the Federal Solar Tax Credit
Get a $20,000 solar loan
Finance your solar system through Milwaukee Shines Solar Program with low interest and 15 years payback period
Wisconsin #47 in the US
- $43 975/year Average savings from going solar in Wisconsin
- 8 088 kWh/year Average electricity consumption of a FL household
- 7 221 kWh/year AC energy output of a 5 kW solar system installed in Wisconsin
- 14 ¢ /kWh The cost of electricity today in Wisconsin
- 29 ¢ /kWh The forecast average utility price over the next 25 years
- $0.77/WAverage gross price of a solar power system as of May 2021
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Solar laws, incentives and rebates in Wisconsin you need to know
Return 26% of your PV system cost with Federal Solar Tax Credit
The Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) allows homeowners to claim 26% of the cost of their solar power system installed until 2022 as an income tax deduction. For example, if your solar system costs $20,000, you are eligible for $5,200 (26% of the total gross cost) in tax credit. Solar system cost comprises not only the money spent on solar panels, but also freight shipping costs, professional installer fees, tools bought or rented, and so on. To claim the ITC, complete all the necessary forms and submit them when filing your taxes.
Sell excess electricity with Net Metering Program
The Net Metering policy in Wisconsin has made it easier for its customers to sell excess solar power instead of storing the energy in batteries. Your PV system will start to pay for itself primarily through the Net Metering program by selling solar energy that you haven’t used to the commercial grid.
When you send excess power to the grid it will be stored as credits which can either be sold or later used to even out monthly power consumption needs. The credit value in Wisconsin is equal to your utility retail rate per kWh and never expires, but continues to roll over as long as you keep the same utility.
One of the top Net Metering utility programs in Wisconsin is through Xcel Energy. You can sign up as a residential or business customer here. An interconnection fee will be required with the application.
Enjoy a flat $500 rebate from Focus on Energy
If you are installing a solar system in Wisconsin, you can qualify for a rebate from Focus on Energy. As a residential customer, you can receive a flat $500 rebate regardless of the size or cost of your project to help with installation fees. To qualify for this rebate, make sure your utility participates in this program as well as complete the reservation application.
Secure a $20,000 solar loan with Milwaukee Shines Solar Financing
If you are a homeowner of Milwaukee, you can apply for Milwaukee Shines Solar Program and receive a loan up to $20,000. Qualifying projects can be up to 6 kW and must be installed by a Focus on Energy Residential Ally solar installer. Offering interest as low as 1.5%, you have 15 years to pay back your loan with no down payments or hidden fees. The granted amount can be used to cover all equipment or fees of your solar installation process.
Raise your property value but not your taxes
Wisconsin residents invested in a solar energy system do not have to pay any additional property taxes on the added value a solar PV system brings to their homes. However, any such home improvement will definitely make it about 4% more valuable on the property market, says the 2019 Zillow report. In order to claim the exemption, property owners must apply for an Energy System Exemption Request from their local assessor.
Protect your solar panels from shade with Solar access rights
Solar access laws will help ensure your PV system always has adequate sun exposure, protecting you from potential obstacles. These rights will guarantee that your neighbor will not enlarge the size of their building or allow their vegetation to block sunlight from reaching your system.
Get a permit to install your solar panels in Wisconsin
It is legal to install solar panels on your house in Wisconsin, but depending on your district they may require a solar permit worksheet before beginning your installation. There is no statewide legislation, however, that makes it unlawful to restrict the installation of solar PV systems. Contact your homeowner’s association (HOAs) to be certain of any regulations that may be in your area. You may have to submit your project for approval before changing the exterior of your house. The board may ask you to hide the system from view, reduce the number of panels or just reject your proposal.
Solar panels help Wisconsin’s survive severe storms
Wisconsin is a state with a high risk for natural disasters, anywhere from floods, tornados, wildfires, or snowstorms. Events like these can unexpectedly cause damage to power lines and generating plants. In such cases, it is better to be prepared for any outages. PV modules are designed to withstand most hurricanes and storms and will be a reliable energy source in case of any blackouts. According to the Environmental Protection Agency weather events are becoming more frequent, powerful, and unpredictable, but by powering your home with solar energy, you will no longer have to worry about blackouts.