Is It the Right Time to Go Solar?: A Guide to 2021 Solar Incentives in Texas

When you live in one of the sunniest states in the country, it’s logical to want to take advantage of all that sunshine by installing solar panels on your roof.

After all, a huge reason Texans use so much electricity in the first place is to run the AC to combat the heat from all that sun. It seems only fair the sun should help offset some of that cost!

Costs have gone down more than 43 percent in the past five years, but the solar incentives in Texas can make the cost of solar even more attractive now. Here’s a rundown of your options.

Federal Tax Credit

The Solar Investment Tax Credit provides a dollar-for-dollar cut in your income taxes. While Congress keeps extending it, the residential credit is projected to end after 2023. Commercial buildings will still be eligible for a 10 percent credit after that date.

The current federal tax credit is 26 percent for home solar systems installed by the end of 2022, stepping down to 22 percent for 2023 installations.

State and Local Incentives

Texas has no state property tax, but the state does offer a property tax exemption that keeps your newly installed solar panels from increasing your home value. The exemption has been part of the constitution since 1978 and is a combination of state and local tax credit.

Homeowners apply for the exemption with the chief appraiser for their appraisal district by April 30. Once the exemption has been allowed, it applies to the home until it changes ownership.

While most local Texas solar incentives are for commercial buildings, a few cities and towns such as San Marcos and Sun Valley offer local incentives for solar use.

Residential Electricity Provider Rebates

The primary way most Texans receive a rebate or credit on a solar panel installation is through their electric utility company. These take the form of buybacks and rebates.

Buyback plans offer bill credits to buy excess solar power created by a home installation. Also called net metering, these arrangements allow the utility company to sell overproduced energy back to the grid. TXU, Reliant, and Green Mountain are a few providers who offer this type of credit.

Utility company solar rebates in Texas offer incentives to reduce the up-front cost or refund you some of the cost after installation. Most of these are offered on a price-per-watt basis, capped at a maximum amount per project. How long you receive the rebate will vary by utility, and your solar installer should handle the application process for you.

Find Solar Incentives in Texas

Reduce the financial impact of going solar by taking advantage of all the discounts and rebates you can. Solar incentives in Texas come in a variety of different packages, and you should start by seeing what your utility company offers. Your solar installer should be able to help you navigate and find solar tax credits in Texas as well.

If you found this article helpful, check out our other blog posts on saving money, green energy, and home improvement.

Alen Parker

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