The cost of electricity keeps going up it seems with the arrival of each new bill. If you have been thinking about solar power and adding panels to your roof like I am, then you’re probably asking yourself the same questions that I am of why solar power could make sense for your budget.
Most of us naturally assume living in a northern climate hardly provides enough of the sun’s energy to redirect to our homes unlike the abundance found in warmer climates. Yet, harnessing the sun’s power in colder climates depends on how much shade your roof gets as well as the size of it for the amount of solar panels that can be installed compared to what you pay your utility company for electricity.
More homes in the United States every year have been switching over to solar power with an estimated four million homes predicted by 2022. As of 2018, 2-gigawatt of that energy was put to use. The top ten states utilizing solar power are in order of dependence are: California, North Carolina, Arizona, Nevada, Texas, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Florida, Utah, and Georgia according to CNBC.
To have a feasible roof for solar panels, you need to look at the pitch, the direction its facing because to benefit from peak sunlight hours of 10a.m. and 2:00 p.m. in addition to the size of your chimney. Neighboring trees that may hang over to shade it also cut down solar power. Therefore, you may want to cut them down, especially if you have several blocking the sunlight.
You also need to consider how old your current roof and the material it was constructed with. For example, slate and some tile roofs aren’t good candidates for a solar panel installation just as a roof having a skylight. In some instances such as with a barrel tile roof, the solar panel installation would need to change using mounting brackets and flashing to prevent water from entering.
Now that I explained if you have the right type of roof for solar power, you also need to factor in the cost. In 2018, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the average home used 13.26 kilowatt-hours. In order to get an estimate, I suggest you check out a solar panel calculator tool or check out Solar Estimate Org., which is really interesting for helping to figure out the cost based on your typical electricity use and where you live in the country. You enter your zip code and it takes you through a series of questions that can help you get a realistic cost and solar providers in your area.
You can also take advantage of the Energy Tax Credit through 2019 to offset some of the costs using Form 5695. Every year after that unto 2021, the amount goes down. How much allowance the tax credit drops is up to the government and can change accordingly.
One reason why solar power could make sense for your budget is the opportunity to save more money on electricity for your home. Another reason is leaving less of a carbon footprint behind in the process.