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Like much of the nation, Maryland is fairly new to solar power. Luckily, like many other states, it’s making up for lost time. Maryland now produces 1,342.4 MW of solar power each year, making up 4.31 percent of the state’s total electricity generation.
The total solar investment in the state is about $3.9 billion, with thousands of people adding solar panels to their homes each year. Keep reading to learn more about solar energy in Maryland and how you can save by installing solar panels on your home.
Maryland solar panel cost
The average cost of a home solar system is about $3 to $5 per watt or between $15,000 and $25,000 for the average 5-kW system. The exact cost will depend on many factors, including the size and configuration of your system. Luckily, there are tax credits and other incentives in place to make sure your actual costs are lower. On average, most people make their money back on their solar panels within 6-9 years.
Why choose Maryland solar power?
Lower energy costs
Installing solar panels can result in significant cost savings. First, generating your own energy using solar panels means you aren’t paying for electricity. Solar panels can also significantly increase the value of your home, allowing you to recoup your initial investment if you sell.
Establish energy independence
Installing solar panels on your home allows you to achieve energy independence, meaning you aren’t reliant on the electricity grid for your power. When this happens, you are no longer vulnerable to power outages or price hikes.
Traditional electricity generation takes a toll on our environment by emitting greenhouse gasses into the air, which contribute to climate change and pollute our air and water. Solar power helps reduce these emissions and lowers your home’s carbon footprint.
Maryland solar panel incentives or rebates
Yes, solar panels are expensive. But there are also plenty of incentives in place to make them more affordable for Maryland homeowners. First, the federal government offers a tax credit for the installation of solar panels and other green energy infrastructure. The credit is 26 percent through 2022 and 22 percent in 2023. The credit will expire starting in 2024 if Congress doesn’t renew it.
Maryland also has a solar rebate program, which offers $1,000 to any homeowner that installs a solar energy system. What’s more, the state has property and sales tax exceptions to ensure your solar panels don’t increase your tax burden. Finally, Maryland offers a net metering program, which lets homeowners receive utility credits for any excess solar energy they generate.
Should I buy or lease my solar panels?
When you make the decision to install solar panels on your home, you’ll also have to decide if buying or leasing panels is the right choice for you. In most cases, buying solar panels saves you the most money over the long run. Solar panels can increase your home’s resale value by $15,000. And once the panels are paid off, all of your energy savings go directly into your pocket. Leasing solar panels, on the other hand, means you’ll be stuck with a monthly payment indefinitely and won’t see your home’s value increase. Also, if you decide to sell your home before your solar lease expires, you will have to find a buyer willing to take over the contract.
That being said, leasing is good for some situations. It’s a way to make solar panels more affordable, ensuring that more families can install them. Another option is shared solar power programs, which allow families to enjoy the perks of solar power without installing their own panels or incurring any upfront costs.
Maryland solar panel companies
There are a variety of Maryland solar panel companies that can help you power your home with energy from the sun. Be sure to thoroughly research your options before signing a contract. When searching for solar panel installers in your area, ask for reviews, customer testimonials, and business history. This will ensure you find the best Maryland solar company for your energy needs.
The history of solar power in Maryland
Maryland’s first solar policies date back to the 1980s and 1990s when the state first began to encourage the use of solar and other green energy. In 1997, the state implemented net metering, which allows homeowners to sell excess solar power back to the electricity grid in exchange for utility credits. Maryland continued to implement solar-friendly policies in the 2000s, including its Renewable Portfolio Standard program and Solar Renewable Energy Credit.
Fast forward to 2021, and Maryland ranks 17th in the nation for solar energy generation. The state generates enough solar energy to power more than 150,000 homes, and solar energy accounts for 4.31 percent of the state’s electricity. Over the past decade, residential solar systems have made up the largest percentage of new solar installations.
Important solar installation factors to consider
Adding solar panels to your home can be a great investment, but there are a few things to consider first:
- Your roof: Solar panels work best on south-facing roofs with slopes of 15 to 40 degrees. They also work best on newer roofs that won’t need to be replaced soon, as well as those that get a lot of direct sunlight.
- Your location: Not all regions are well-suited to solar panels. While some states get plenty of sunshine year long, other states are notorious for their overcast weather. Solar panels can still work when in cloudy weather or indirect sunlight, but they are most efficient when it’s sunny.
- Your HOA: Some homeowners associations and other neighborhood organizations restrict the use of renewable energy infrastructure or require approval before installation.
Solar power FAQs
How much would solar cost in Maryland?
Installing solar panels costs between $15,000 and $25,000, but your out-of-pocket costs are likely to be fewer thanks to tax credits, rebates, and other savings.
Is solar power a good investment in Maryland?
Solar power can be an excellent investment, but it’s important to consider your unique circumstances. How much sunshine does your area get? How much energy do you use each month? These questions will help you determine whether it’s worth it in your situation.
How much could I save by investing in solar?
Installing solar panels on your home can save you thousands of dollars — or even tens of thousands of dollars — between the electricity savings each month and the increase to your home’s value.
Where can I find a good solar panel installer in Maryland?
SaveOnEnergy offers a variety of solar guides and resources to make finding the best Maryland solar company easier. During your search, remember to compare quotes and offers from more than one solar installer and research each option before making your decision.
How does solar power help the environment?
While traditional electricity generation emits carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, solar power and other forms of renewable energy don’t. Not only is solar energy renewable — meaning we’ll never run out — but it can reduce your home’s carbon footprint.