What Permits Do I Need To Install Solar Panels

What Permits Do I Need To Install Solar Panels?

If you’re considering solar panels, there’s a lot of information to gather and keep track of.

You’ll want to first find out if it even makes sense to put solar panels on your house.

You’ll want to get quotes from solar installation companies near you. Or, if you’re planning to put the panels on yourself, get quotes on the equipment you’ll need. And you’ll also want to find out how many panels you’ll need and how much of your home’s energy power they’ll produce.

And those are just the big things. There are also a number of smaller details you’ll have to address before you put panels on your roof.

One of these will deal with permitting. In most cases, you will need permits before you get your solar installation. But you may be wondering “what permits do I need to install solar panels?”

Here’s an overview of what you will likely need when it comes to solar panels. Just keep in mind that each municipality is different, so the specifics may vary a bit in your area.

Who Needs To Get Permits?

Pretty much everyone will need permits to install solar panels. The exceptions may be if you own a literal cabin in the woods and/or a home that’s in an area that doesn’t have any permit requirements.

Assuming you need them, there may be multiple types of permits or approvals you need. This is the case whether you hire a solar installation company or take the DIY route with your panels.

If you do it yourself, you’ll need to get all the permits yourself. If you hire a company to do it, they may get all the necessary permits for you.

What Permits Do I Need To Install Solar Panels?

The first permit that you’ll likely need to get so you can install solar panels is one from your local county or city or municipality. This will likely be a building permit allowing you to make modifications to your home.

To get approval, you’ll need to submit a bunch of documents/paperwork to your local city government regarding your solar panel installation.

These may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Permit application
  • Owner-builder verification form
  • Site plan
  • Roof plan
  • Construction plan
  • Elevation plan
  • Equipment plan
  • Electrical plan
  • Location plan

Where you live and your local government’s requirements will determine which of these you’ll need in your situation. After you submit the paperwork, you may have to answer questions or even attend a meeting or hearing arranged by your local government.

Assuming all goes smoothly, you’ll get your approval and can pick up and pay for your permits. Fees for permits can vary quite a bit based on where you live.

Electrical Permits For Solar Panels

You may also need electrical permits to be able to install your solar panels and attach the system to your home. Depending on where you live, you may need a certified electrical contractor to connect your solar panel. (Yes, even if you are capable of connecting the solar panels yourself.)

Don’t Forget the HOA

If you are living in a subdivision or a master-planned community, you may need to get the homeowners association or HOA’s approval. Hopefully, you’re on their good side and won’t have any issues here!

What Happens If You Don’t Get The Proper Permits?

Not getting these permits, can be bad news for you. Instead of saving money from solar panels, you may lose some if you do not have the proper permits.

Chances are good you’ll be fined for installing a solar panel without the necessary permits. Even worse, you might be forced to remove your solar panels.

So while it may be a pain in the rear, it’s best to suck it up and get the permits you need before installing solar panels on your home.