Idaho Solar Panels: Pricing and Incentives

How much do solar panels cost in Idaho?

Written by Rick Hoel

Edited by Hannah Whatley

Last updated 10/25/2022


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Solar power in Idaho

Idaho is steadily improving its solar power industry. In addition to the federal solar tax credit, Idaho offers many state and local incentives homeowners can take advantage of when going solar.

If you are an Idaho resident, you can potentially reduce your energy costs by investing in solar power. Adding solar to your home can also help reduce your carbon footprint and benefit the environment.

If you are curious about solar power and want to learn more, SaveOnEnergy.com® is a great place to start. We can help you learn about the advantages of using solar power in Idaho.

Idaho solar panel cost

The cost of solar panels is measured in dollars per watt and is determined by several factors. The national average is $3.82 per watt, but Idaho solar panel costs may vary. You can expect to pay around $25,000 for a complete solar system before tax credits or rebates. Despite the investment, homeowners typically experience an average payback period of six to nine years.

Though the actual costs of solar panels have decreased dramatically over the last decade, other related “soft costs” have not declined in tandem. 

Soft costs are expenses for permitting, inspection, interconnection, and other additional items not related to the solar equipment. You can learn more about the 2022 cost of solar panels before making a decision. Understanding what incentives and rebates you qualify for will help you determine the total cost of your solar power investment. 

Ready to go solar? Call 877-307-7668 to be connected with a solar expert today!

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Idaho solar panel incentives or rebates

Incentives and rebates can play a big part in offsetting the total cost of purchasing solar panels. Homeowners in the U.S. are able to claim a 30% federal tax credit on their federal income taxes for systems installed between 2022 and 2032. The actual amount of the credit is not subject to a maximum limit. 

This credit changes to 26% in 2033 and 22% in 2034. Though it is set to expire in 2035, Congress could renew the legislation, which has been done in the past. Nevertheless, this is not a guaranteed change, and if you are on the fence about investing in solar panels, it would be wise to make the decision in time to qualify for the credit.

Idaho offers additional incentives to help homeowners manage the costs associated with installing solar panels. The Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) is a comprehensive resource which lists 63 local, state, and federal programs in Idaho that are worth exploring if you are interested in solar power for your home. While there are no mandatory statewide net metering rules in Idaho, some power utility sources do offer net metering, which permits solar panel users to sell unused power back to the electrical grid.

Residential Alternative Energy Tax DeductionTaxpayers in Idaho can receive an income tax deduction of 40% of the total cost of solar energy equipment in the first year of installation and 20% for the next three years, with a limit of $20,000 deducted all together.
Low-Interest Energy Loan ProgramsThe Idaho government has low-interest loans available for energy-efficient building improvements such as renewable energy projects such as solar.
Federal Solar Tax CreditWith this incentive, customers can receive 30% of the solar system’s cost back on their taxes when they install their solar system on their primary/secondary residence.
Net MeteringAlthough Idaho doesn’t offer net metering statewide, three of its utilities (Rocky Mountain Power, Avista Utilities, and Idaho Power) offer this incentive to consumers. 

Why choose Idaho solar power?

There are many benefits that come with the decision to install solar panels on your home. Some of the most notable are reducing energy costs, achieving energy independence, and doing your part to help the environment. 

Lower energy costs

The most well-known and advertised benefit of installing solar panels on your home is the significant reduction of energy costs. Solar panels capture sunlight and convert it into energy that will power your home. When you choose to power your home with solar energy, you can significantly reduce your electricity bill from your local utility.

Establish energy independence

Related to lowering your energy costs, reliance upon solar power will reduce your dependence upon the traditional electrical grid. This means that, during times of rising demand when energy prices can spike, you will be less affected by these increases. Additionally, if you also invest in a solar battery, you can manage those occasions when power outages leave you without power and otherwise at the mercy of the grid.

Go green

Solar power is a form of green energy. When installed on your home, solar can be an excellent vehicle to reduce your home’s environmental footprint

Should I buy or lease my solar panels?

Idaho residents have the option to buy or lease solar panels for their home. There are certainly advantages to each option depending on your circumstances, but you are likely to save more money overall when you purchase your solar panels. Buying your solar panels will permit you to receive the federal tax credit described above. With a lease, you will not be able to take advantage of this credit. Purchasing solar panels will also save you more money over time and can increase your home’s value by $15,000 on average. 

However, there are times when leasing solar panels is the best choice. For people with financial concerns, leasing is an easier way to obtain solar panels without a significant upfront cost. Home renters may want to consider leasing in case they don’t plan to stay in the home long enough to take full advantage of the savings and benefit from the home’s increase in value as a result of solar panels.

Community solar is another lesser known option for those who might not be able to buy and enjoy the advantages of solar energy. Anyone is able to participate in the program and will split the solar power generated. 

Community solar programs are great options for apartment dwellers or renters who can’t install solar panels. The programs can also benefit those  who can’t afford to buy or lease solar panels.

Idaho solar panel companies

There are many well qualified solar panel providers and installers available in Idaho to help meet your solar panel needs. To begin the process, you will need to conduct some basic research to find the right company for you. Fortunately, SaveOnEnergy can help you with this. We have tons of resources and information to help you familiarize yourself with the solar power industry. When you’re ready, SaveOnEnergy can connect you with an installer in your area. Call the number on your screen to learn more.

Important solar installation factors to consider

While solar panels are a viable option to keep your energy costs down and reduce negative environmental impact, don’t rush into a contract. Before outfitting your home with solar panels, take the time to determine which solar panels are best for your home and consider several important factors:

  • The state of your roof: You don’t want to make a major investment on a roof that will need to be replaced well before you have received a substantial return on that investment. A solar panel installation makes the most sense on roofs that are newer and in good shape and work best on roofs that face south and have a slope from 15 to 40 degrees.
  • Local weather patterns: Clear exposure to sunlight is required to achieve maximum energy from solar panels. If you live in an area where local weather conditions typically reduce your sunshine, solar panels are likely not your best option. Check your local weather patterns over several years before making your decision. A local installer or neighbor with solar panels can be a good resource when deciding if solar is right for you.
  • Your neighborhood rules: Often, homeowners associations (HOAs) impose rules and restrictions concerning the installation of solar panels. If solar panels are permitted, there still may be limitations on the type and size of the panels. Even if everything is in compliance with your HOA, check to see if a formal HOA approval is required.

Solar power FAQs

  • How much you pay for solar panels in Idaho will depend on a variety of factors including the configuration, quality, and size of your system, the number of added features, and permitting and labor costs. The national average for a solar system is $24,742, though this amount can be significantly reduced with available tax credits, rebates, and other financial incentives.

  • Investing in solar panels can be a good investment in Idaho as it is in most parts of the country. Many solar systems can support your energy usage for over 20 years. The decrease in electricity bills and increase in home value make solar panels in Idaho are great.

  • Savings from installing solar panels is dependent on several factors, particularly how much you’ve historically spent on electricity and how much electricity will increase over time. The potential savings with solar power in Idaho is $1,548 per year.

  • There are many excellent solar installers in Idaho. If you are considering an installation on your home, SaveOnEnergy can help you get started in finding the right company for you. Be sure to thoroughly research all your options before signing a solar contract.

  • Solar power is both a green and renewable energy resource. An investment in solar panels will reduce the carbon footprint of your home.

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