Installing Solar Panels in Middlesex County, Massachusetts: Costs, Incentives & More
As of 2023, the cost of installing a solar panel in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, is $3 to $4.2 per watt. According to the Department of Energy, the cost of a solar panel depends on many factors, including the solar company you’re buying from, your location, and the type of equipment you’re using.
Tax credits and rebates also help to reduce the cost of solar panels in Massachusetts.
|Energy System Size
|Solar Panel Cost
|Cost After Credit
Note: The values in the third row are after deducting the 30% Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit and the 15% Residential Renewable Energy Income Tax Credit, which allows for up to a maximum of $1,000.
On average, solar panels in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, take 8.74 years to pay for themselves.
However, the exact amount of time it takes for your solar panel to pay for itself depends on its price in relation to how much electricity it generates.
The more electricity an energy system generates, the faster your solar panel can pay for itself.
Incentives are offers that the government uses to encourage homeowners to opt for solar energy. The federal government and Massachusetts state government offer various incentives to increase the adoption of solar energy. They include:
The Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit) is one of the most popular and most utilized incentives for installing solar energy in Massachusetts. This credit is only available to those who buy a solar energy system outrightly, through cash or a loan.
The tax credit allows buyers to claim 30% of the total value of the solar energy system. This tax credit was introduced in 2006 and was initially set to phase out. However, with the signing of the Inflation Reduction Act, the tax credit period was extended from 2022 to 2032.
In 2033, the tax credit will reduce to 26% and drop to another 22% in 2034. In 2035, it will expire, except if Congress decides to extend it again.
The Massachusetts Residential Energy Credit allows residents who purchase a home solar power system to claim 15% of its value in tax credits.
Buyers can only claim up to a maximum of $1,000. Any tax credit you don’t use can be carried over and deducted from your personal tax for up to three years.
This incentive was launched by the state of Massachusetts’ Department of Energy Resources (DOER) in 2018. It’s available to customers of Eversource, Unitil, and National Grid.
Under this incentive, homeowners can receive between $0.19 and $0.31 per kilowatt hour of energy that they produce over ten years.
The amount you receive depends on several factors, including the size of your system, your utility provider, and your capacity block.
The SMART program also provides higher payouts for low-income customers or those who install solar batteries.
The Massachusetts state government also offers incentives to reduce the direct cost of purchasing solar panels. All purchases for a home solar energy system are exempted from the normal 6.25% sales tax on most products in Massachusetts. This can encourage homeowners to buy larger and more efficient solar power systems.
The Bay State grants a 100% property tax exemption on the value of the solar power system for a 20-year period. It’s important to know that this property tax exemption is only for the value of the solar power system, not the entire property.
Usually, any improvements on a home lead to a reappraisal and an increase in its value. However, in Massachusetts, any home solar power system won’t be included in the reevaluation.
There are a few ways you can sell solar energy in Middlesex County, Massachusetts. Some of them include;
Net metering is one of the most popular ways to sell solar energy. If you’re a customer of any of the three regulated electric companies, Eversource, National Grid, and Unitil, then you can net meter in Massachusetts.
Net metering allows you to sell any excess energy that you generate from your solar energy system back to the utility grid.
At the end of each month, the utility company calculates your net consumption by subtracting the amount of electricity you used from the grid from the amount that you sent back to it.
If your net consumption is positive, then you’d pay the utility company for the difference. Conversely, if it’s negative, then you’ll receive net metering credits. These net metering credits don’t expire, and you can keep rolling them over to the next billing period.
Net purchase and sale or net billing also involves selling electricity to the grid. However, under this arrangement, the prices may fluctuate.
It usually involves consumers selling electricity when there’s a high demand, and it’s expensive. This is different from net metering, where you regularly sell your electricity at a fixed rate. Net Purchase and Sale is more common with solar farms and larger companies.
Massachusetts requires energy companies to source a certain percentage of the energy they produce from renewable energy to help combat climate change. These companies can either meet these requirements with their own production or buy Solar Renewable Energy Certificates to meet the quota.
As a private citizen, you receive one SREC for each megawatt hour of electricity that you produce with your solar energy system. You can sell these SRECs to companies that need them to meet their renewable energy quotas.
While this isn’t exactly selling your solar energy, it’s a great way to make some money from generating electricity using solar energy.
Beyond your solar panel and battery, there are certain requirements you need to have before you can sell solar energy in Middlesex County, Massachusetts. Having these requirements will help you avoid hazards or legal liability. They include
Power conditioning equipment help to convert solar photovoltaic energy that’s received from the solar panels into a form that can be stored and used later. This is essential for selling solar energy, as it’s the excess that you’ve stored that you can sell.
A power conditioning system typically has an inverter, grid charger, battery, and solar charge controller.
Depending on your utility company, you may require certain safety equipment before selling solar energy to the grid. For example, some locations mandate solar systems to have a shut-off switch when the grid fails.
This is to avoid harming emergency workers who are trying to fix the grid during a blackout. Ensure you check with your energy company to confirm the specific requirements of selling energy to them.
Beyond the regular electric meter, you may need special metering equipment if you’re selling solar energy back to the grid. This will help you monitor your energy consumption and how much you send to the grid. You’d also find it much easier to calculate your net metering bills and avoid disputes with your energy company.
Massachusetts has a range of laws and policies governing the installation of solar energy systems and sale of solar energy back into the grid. Ensure you check with your local government office to be sure you’re not violating any laws. It’s best to hire professionals to set up your solar energy sales system. They’re likely to be aware of legal requirements and can give you comprehensive advice on how to get started.
Some of the more popular solar installation companies in Massachusetts include.
SunPower offers virtual consultations where buyers can see how the system works before making a purchase. Customers can shop for solar panels, batteries, electric vehicle chargers, and inverters at SunPower. Their office is located at:
262 Washington St Suite 700,
Momentum Solar stands out for its dedication to making the adoption of solar energy easy and fun for customers. This solar company offers great support and guidance to customers buying home solar power systems, making them a great choice for first-time buyers.
Momentum Solar also provides support services to help customers enroll for rebates and government incentives, helping customers save money.
They also offer a mobile application that allows customers to track their solar project from the moment of the purchase till its installation is complete. The mobile application also provides data on how much energy the system is generating and its peak hours.
Other products and services, include electric vehicle charging systems, solar panel installations, surveys and designs, and solar system monitoring.
You can purchase your solar system using a lump sum payment, loan, lease, or power purchase agreement.
50 Dangelo Drive,
Marlborough, MA 01752.
Trinity Solar has the advantage of experience, being one of the oldest solar energy companies in Massachusetts. Created in 1994, it is one of the largest solar energy company in the United States of America.
As of 2023, Trinity Solar has completed over eighty thousand installations for customers across the country, including Massachusetts.
In addition to installation, the company provides a mobile application that lets customers monitor the output and health and their solar power system. Customers can also monitor their energy consumption using the application.
Trinity Solar offers a decent amount of support and educational services, including assistance with government incentives and rebates, solar industry news, and free online materials. They’re located at:
20 Patterson Brook Road,
Unit 1, West Wareham MA 02576.
Palmetto Solar has one of the best customer service and support systems in the solar energy industry. A highlight of their services is the** Peace of Mind program** which customers can join for an additional $12 per month. Subscription to this program grants them access to a huge amount of discounts and rebates.
Palmetto Solar also offers a diverse range of services including survey and design, pest control, battery installation, Tesla battery system installations, solar panel installation, cleaning, removal, and reinstallation.
Residents can purchase a solar system from Palmetto solar through a loan, lease, power purchase agreement, or a lump sum payment.
1505 King St Ext Suite 114
Charleston Ma 29403, Franklin, MA.
Vivint Solar offers a 25-year performance warranty on its products. Another highlight of Vivint’s services is that they allow customers to transfer their solar energy contracts (lease, loan, or power purchase agreement) to new owners if they sell their homes.
If the customer chooses to retain their solar energy system, Vivint Solar will remove the solar panels and reinstall them at the customer’s new residence at no extra charge.
Vivint Solar allows customers to finance their systems using lump sum payments, loans, leases, and power purchase agreements.
230 Ballardvale St E,
Wilmington, MA 01887.
Multiple factors determine the price of a solar energy system. Some of these include:
One of the major factors that influence the price of a solar energy system is its size. The more solar panels you have, the higher the cost of your collar energy system.
However, it’s important to note that while large solar power systems incur a higher upfront cost, they can help you save money on electricity in the long run. On average, most homes use 6 KW solar power systems.
Another factor that affects the cost of a solar power system is the type of solar panel it uses. Certain types of solar panels are more efficient at electricity production, making them more effective.
For example, monocrystalline solar panels are up to 5% more effective than polycrystalline and thin film solar panels. Additionally, some solar panels are more durable than others, incurring fewer maintenance costs. Thin film solar panels tend to be cheaper but less durable and will need to be changed more frequently.
The type of solar equipment you use in your installations will also contribute to the overall cost of the solar energy system. The type of equipment you’ll require depends on your needs and specification. Massachusetts receives a sufficient amount of sunlight, making specialized solar equipment unnecessary.
However, the frequency of extreme weather conditions means Massachusetts homeowners often require a backup power supply. Installing solar batteries can add thousands of dollars to initial purchase and installation costs. Furthermore, slight variations in solar equipment can also increase costs.
The ease of installing the solar energy system in your home also affects its costs. Homes with flat roofs that are easy to navigate often incur fewer installation costs.
Similarly, the installation will be cheaper if there are great locations in your building to place the solar panel so it can absorb sunlight.
Some customers opt for ground-mounted solar panels, which usually cost more. Furthermore, depending on the building’s roofing material, installing solar panels may incur additional building costs.
Solar companies have different installation and equipment prices. As a result, the company you pick will affect the cost of your solar energy system. Large national companies usually have cheaper equipment but may charge more for installations.
You can get quotes from different companies and decide on the one that’s best suited for you. It’s important to note that shabby installations and equipment can cause additional costs in the future. So, it’s best to find a balance between price and quality when picking a company.
The way you decide to pay for your solar power system can also affect how much you pay for it. Paying with cash has the highest upfront cost, but the lowest overall cost. Alternative financing options like loans, leases, and power purchase agreements often have lower upfront costs, but cost more in the long run. Additionally, loans, leases, and power purchasing agreements come with the risk of the solar power system being repossessed upon default.
Beyond the factors above, there are additional factors that can influence the cost of a solar power system in Middlesex County, Massachusetts. Some of them include:
The United State Department of Energy strongly recommends that you hire a licensed and certified solar installer to install your solar panels. In Massachusetts, it’s mandatory for anyone installing a solar panel to have a building permit and a license.
Additionally, while the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) Certification is voluntary, state regulations have made it somewhat inescapable.
Yes, solar panels increase the value of homes in Middlesex County. A study by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory estimated that a solar panel installation increases a home’s value by $5,911 for each kilowatt of electricity generated.
This means that a solar system generating 4 kilowatts would increase a home’s value by $23,644. A home with a 6-kilowatt solar system would increase its value by $35,466, and so on.
The major factor that affects whether a solar system will increase a home’s value is whether its owned by the homeowner or leased.
According to the same study by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, a solar system owned by the homeowner is likely to increase the home’s value by the cost of the solar system. Contrastingly, leased solar systems don’t have any significant impact on the home’s price.
However, home buyers may incur certain costs if they intend to buy out the leased solar panel. For example, the homeowner may be behind on some lease payments. Some other factors that can affect how much a solar system increases a home’s value include:
Some solar companies have policies that allow them to revalue a solar system if the house where it’s installed is resold. If your solar company has such a policy, it may increase the home’s value.
Electricity has different costs in each locale and state. Solar panels will be worth more in places where electricity is expensive and will add more to the home’s value.
Solar panels usually increase a home’s value by the amount it costs to purchase and install them. In places with high installation costs, homes that already have solar panels will have a higher value.
The more power a solar system generates, the more it costs. So, homes with larger solar systems will have a greater increase in their value.
Condition of the system
Homes with old or damaged solar panels are likely to have a minimal direct increase in value. However, buyers may incur indirect costs if they decide to repair the solar system.
Yes, homes with solar panels enjoy some property tax exemptions in Middlesex County, Massachusetts.
When you install a solar power system in a home, it’s not included in its revaluation. As a result, homeowners enjoy a 100% property tax exemption on the value of the solar power system for the next 20 years.
If you’ve decided to buy and install solar panels in your home, you may find yourself wondering, “How can I find Middlesex solar companies near me.” There are various ways you can find information about credible Massachusetts solar companies around you. Here are some of them:
One of the best ways to learn about solar companies near you is by talking to friends and family who have patronized them. Discussing with friends and family can give you a personal insight into the company’s services and offers. They may be able to give you tips on what to avoid or which offers will work best for you. Similarly, they may have access to a referral bonus or discount that you can use.
Most government websites have sections dedicated to educating citizens about clean energy options, This often includes resources detailing the location of solar companies in your area. You can search the Middlesex County or Massachusetts website for information about how to get solar panels installed at your residence or workplace. Since local governments have an interest in promoting local businesses, they’re likely to recommend capable hands in your area.
Artisans like electricians and construction workers are involved in installing solar panels for different kinds of buildings. They usually have dealings with solar companies and may be able to recommend good solar companies near you. Local artisans often know how you can get the best value for your money. They may also be able to inform you of exclusive promotional offers. As an added benefit, you can easily book them for your installations.
There are various online solar marketplaces dedicated to providing information on solar companies. You can search for local solar companies on your preferred solar marketplace. Use filters to get results that are more suited to your needs. There are many solar marketplaces, so finding one should be easy. You can enter “Massachusetts solar companies near me” or “Middlesex solar companies near me” in your Google search bar and scroll through the results till you find a company you prefer.
After doing your research, you may be wondering how to pick the best solar company for you. Here are some factors you can consider to make the best choice:
The most important thing to consider when picking a solar company near you is if they have the required state license. Massachusetts has strict regulations for solar installations.
In addition to a building permit for installations, it must be done by a licensed professional. Additionally, some certifications can be a sign of high service quality.
For example, the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) Certification is quite prestigious. If a local solar company has this certification, that may indicate a greater level of skill. You can ask the company if they have this certification or check their website yourself.
One of the best ways to get information about a company’s services is to check its online reviews. You can find reviews on company websites and third-party resources like Yelp or Google.
Try to go through as many reviews as possible to get a balanced view of the company. Some reviews may be too positive or negative, but reading different reviews from different sources should give you an accurate description of the company’s services.
Look out for details like price, service delivery, customer service, product durability, warranties, and workmanship.
One of the first things to consider is your solar needs. Not every solar company will have the panels or financing options that you’re comfortable with. After narrowing down your options, check their catalog to confirm that they have the panels you need. You can also check their websites or call their customer care to ask about their financing options.
After researching local solar companies and narrowing them down to a few options, pick your favorite three or five. Then, contact each of them to ask for quotes. Getting quotes from multiple companies ensures you're getting competitive prices. Additionally, you can consider other factors like distance to make the best choice offers. In addition to companies you contact, you can also find quotes on online solar marketplaces. Comparing all your information can help you ensure you’re getting the best option for you in the marketplace.
There are multiple benefits that come with opting for a local solar company. Some of them include
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) reported that large national solar companies charged about 33 cents more per watt for solar installations when compared to local solar companies. For average users, that’s up to an additional $2,300 to install your solar panel. This difference in price may be due to the cost of traveling to the customer’s home and other factors. Regardless, opting for local solar companies can help you save a considerable amount on your local installation, making it an ideal choice.
Local solar companies serve a much smaller market than their larger national counterparts. This means that their customer service staff are less stretched out. As a result, they can dedicate more time and attention to each customer’s needs. Also, the business model of smaller solar companies usually relies heavily on customer referrals. This often leads to greater investments in the quality of customer service. Finally, local solar companies are likely to employ customer service representatives that are familiar with the locality and its quirks. This usually fosters a better connection with customers.
Local solar companies tend to rely on full-time professional talent to serve a small market. Contrastingly, national solar companies rely on independent contractors to meet high demand. As a result, local solar companies typically offer more skilled and accountable artisans for your installations. Local artisans are also more knowledgeable about local weather conditions, solar panel prices, and custom installation options. This helps them deliver services of a higher quality.
It can cost as much as a new car to purchase and install a solar power system. This can be a huge financial commitment for most households. Fortunately, there are various financing options to help with this:
While this option isn’t very popular, customers who have enough money can pay upfront for their solar power system. This option will likely incur a higher upfront cost. However, customers will be able to take full advantage of all state and federal taxes. Additionally, customers won’t have to pay any interests that accrue under other financing options.
A solar loan allows buyers to borrow money from a lender or solar company to purchase and install a solar power system. Under this financing option, the buyer owns the solar power system and can take advantage of state and federal tax incentives. Solar loans are like other types of loans, involving a principal amount, interest rate, and expected payback duration. The loan may require collateral or be an unsecured loan. Usually, many buyers fix the terms of the loan such that they’re paying the same amount or lesser than their monthly electricity bill. That way, they’re still saving money while paying off the loan.
Under a power purchase agreement, a solar financing company is responsible for purchasing, installing, and maintaining a solar power system on the customer’s property. Then, the customer buys electricity from the company at an agreed rate per kilowatt-hour. This is usually based on a long-term contract where the customer buys electricity generated by the solar power system at a competitive rate. Under a PPA, the customer avoids all costs of purchasing, installing, and maintaining a solar power system. Furthermore, the price in the contract is binding, meaning the homeowner is protected from any increase in prices. Conversely, if electricity prices reduce, the homeowner will operate at a loss. Under this financing option, the homeowner doesn’t own the solar power system. As a result, they’re not qualified for any state or federal tax credits.
A solar lease is when a solar financing company purchases and installs a solar power system in a homeowner’s building, The homeowner enjoys electricity from the system and makes a scheduled payment in return. This payment may be monthly or at any other duration that the lease specifies. Under a solar lease, the homeowner avoids any purchase or installation costs. The lease specifies who handles maintenance, and it’s usually the solar financing company. Solar leases are a great way to save money if the monthly lease payments are less than the homeowner’s monthly electricity bill.