The installation of solar panels is getting more popular in Colorado.
The bright, strong sunshine the state gets along with good incentives are a big reason why many Colorado homeowners are going solar.
According to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), the state of Colorado has an installed capacity of 2,183 megawatts (MW) of solar power. That’s enough to supply electricity to 452,783 homes!
Below you’ll find the latest on solar costs, rebates, incentives and more in The Centennial State and why now may be the ideal time to act.
Solar Panels Colorado: A Guide For CO Homeowners
Cost of Solar Panels in Colorado
You’ll see a wide range of estimates of what the average cost for solar is in Colorado.
The average cost per watt for a system ranges from around $3.00 to a little over $4.62. And the total cost for installation ranges from about $12,000 to $45,000.
Why such a big range? Because every situation is different. How many panels you need, what solar company you use, the efficiency of the panels you choose and other factors determine how much you end up paying.
The only way to get a good idea of how much solar panels will cost you is to get a quote from a local installer. (We suggest you get multiple quotes from local installers so you can compare costs, equipment, savings estimates and more.)
The bottom line is that a rough average total cost for solar panels for an average installation in Colorado is around $15,500.
With your electricity savings, it’s estimated that a solar installation will pay for itself in 10 – 14 years. Though, as fast as electricity rates are rising, you may break even on your solar investment sooner than that.
Colorado Solar Incentives
One of the reasons Colorado residents are going solar is due to the tax credits and incentives many qualify for.
Here’s an overview of the current solar incentives, which are some of the best in the country, available to Colorado residents:
Colorado, like many other states, has a generous net metering policy. Net metering allows you to connect your solar panels to the electrical grid of a public utility.
If you produce excess energy that you do not immediately require, you can sell it back to the grid in exchange for credits that can be applied to your future energy bills. The money the utility owes you will show up as a credit on your next bill. Or, if you produce more electricity than you use over the course of a year, the electric company will cut you a check.
Xcel Energy currently has the best net metering program in the state.
Colorado Solar Tax Rebates
In addition to the significant federal solar tax credit (see below), Colorado offers its residents many solar rebates and tax credits.
Depending on your location, you could be eligible for a rebate between $400 and $2,500 through EnergySmart Colorado. With this incredible per-kilowatt (kW) refund from Holy Cross Energy, you may save up to $3,000.
Property Tax Exemption for Residential Renewable Energy Equipment
The Property Tax Exemption for Residential Renewable Energy Equipment exempts consumers who purchase solar systems for their houses from incurring extra property taxes resulting from installing solar panels.
San Miguel Power Association
The San Miguel Power Association Rebate Program provides rebates to utility customers who install solar energy installations on their land.
City of Boulder – Solar Sales and Use Tax Rebate
After installing a solar system, Boulder residents will receive a return of around 15% of the sales and use tax they pay.
Federal Solar Tax Rebate
All Colorado residents can take advantage of the current Federal tax credits for solar. Due to the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, you can get a 30% tax credit for installing solar on your home. That includes the cost of the panels, labor, batteries and anything else that’s a part of your system.
This tax credit will save many homeowners thousands of dollars off the cost of solar. This is a dollar-for-dollar tax credit, and here’s how that works…
If you have an average size solar installation and it costs $15,000. Your tax credit for that will be $5,000. At the end of the year, if you owe $6,000 in taxes to the IRS, you would only have to pay $1,000 due to your solar tax credit.
Is Solar Worth It In Colorado?
That’s a lot of information to take in. But it all boils down to this question… Is solar worth it in Colorado?
If you factor in…
- The available incentives highlighted above
- The Federal tax credit, and
- Low solar panel prices (prices have dropped almost 50% in the last 5 years)…
… the answer for many Colorado residents is absolutely YES!
Solar panel systems take an average of 10 – 14 years to pay for themselves in CO. And, over 25 years; the average CO homeowner will save around $60,000 on electricity costs by having solar power their homes.
This doesn’t even take into account the environmental benefits of solar and being able to supply your own electricity and be energy independent (if you include batteries with your system).
But solar won’t make sense for all homeowners in Colorado. How much electricity you use, how much sunlight your roof gets, the number of panels you can fit on your roof, and other factors all come into play here.
The only way to truly understand how much the upfront costs will be and how much you’ll save is to get an estimate from a trusted, local installer.
You’ll definitely want to get at least a few estimates because the costs and savings can vary quite a bit from company to company.
A great place to get at least one of your estimates is UnderstandSolar. They’ve been around a long time and are the #1 Solar Advisor in the US. They have partnerships with the largest and most trustworthy solar installers in Colorado.
You can get a solar savings estimate from them in about a minute. Just enter your zip code below to get started, then fill out the form on the UnderstandSolar site to get your savings estimate.
Why NOW Is A Great Time To See If Solar Makes Sense For Your Home
If you even think you may want solar panels for your home, now is the time to do it. This is because we look to be in a really good window for those who want to save with solar.
However, this window for savings may not last much longer for a few reasons.
- Yes, solar panels cost a LOT less than they did just a few years ago. However, costs may be on the rise. Because of material shortages, tariffs on imported panels and supply chain issues, many expect prices to soon rise quite a bit.
The 26% Federal solar tax rebate drops to 22% in 2023 and goes away completely in 2024, so the time to take advantage of the thousands in savings thanks to Uncle Sam, is drawing to a close soon.As mentioned above, the federal solar tax rebate is now at 30% for all homeowners, thanks to the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022.
- More extreme weather coupled with power grid problems have led to more frequent and prolonged power outages throughout the US. This is increasing demand for solar and batteries and wait times for installation are growing.
- The longer you hold off, the more you miss out on saving money on your monthly electric bill
To make sure you don’t miss out on the current low costs and incentives, it’s worth at least getting an estimate or two now. Have an expert assess your situation, run the numbers for you and see how much you can save.
Again, we highly recommend you get at least one of your quotes from the #1 Solar Advisor in the U.S., UnderstandSolar. They have relationships with the largest, most trusted solar installers to provide homeowners with free, accurate, no-obligation solar savings estimates.
To get started, just enter your zip code below and fill out the form on UnderstandSolar’s site to get an accurate savings estimate from a trustworthy local CO solar installer.
The representative that contacts you won’t bite (we promise!) and if you’re not ready to go solar or you find another company with a better offer, that’s totally okay. But at least you’ll do so now, knowing you’ve made an informed decision.
And, by taking this first step now, you may save yourself a HUGE amount on your electric bills in the years and decades to come.