Rhode Island Solar Panels: Pricing and Incentives

How much do solar panels cost in Rhode Island

Written by Erin Gobler

Edited by Madison Khalil

Last updated 10/25/2022

Shobeir Ansari/Moment/Getty images

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Solar power in Rhode Island

As in many states, solar energy production in Rhode Island has increased dramatically in recent years. While it may not be among the top producers of solar energy in the nation, nearly 10% of the state’s electricity comes from solar power, and that number is only expected to increase.

If you live in Rhode Island, you could save money and reduce your home’s environmental footprint by installing solar panels on your home. Keep reading to learn the costs and benefits of solar panels, as well as how to decide if they’re right for your home.

Rhode Island solar panel cost

The cost of solar panels in Rhode Island depends on a variety of factors, including the brand and type of solar panels you choose, the size of your system, local installation and permitting costs, and more. Solar panel costs are measured in watts, and the typical cost of a residential solar panel system is between $3 and $5 per watt.

According to Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Tracking the Sun report, in Rhode Island solar panel system price per watt ranges between $3.21 and $5.27 per watt, with system sizes ranging from 4.5-kW to 9.6-kW, resulting in a system cost range between $14,368 and $50,626. The Rhode Island median solar panel system price per watt is $4.20, and median system size is 6.4-kW, resulting in a $26,894 median system cost. However, there are federal and state incentives and rebate programs that can bring down the total cost. Between financial incentives and energy savings, you can expect to break even on your solar panel purchase within six to nine years.

Price Per WattSystem Size (kW)Cost
High$5.279.6 kW$50,626
Median$4.206.4 kW$26,894
Low$3.214.5 kW$14,368

Ready to go solar? Call 866-212-2908 to be connected with a solar expert today!

Get an exact quote from our solar advisors

The SaveOnEnergy marketplace helps you search, compare, sign up and save on the right energy fit for your home — all for free. If you’re interested in solar, answer a few questions to get an exact price quote from our solar advisors.

1. Complete the form below
2. Schedule an appointment with a solar advisor
3. Get an exact price quote for solar panels for your home

Not eligible for rooftop? Check your availability with community solar.

Rhode Island solar panel incentives or rebates

The upfront cost of solar panels can seem overwhelming, but there are ways to lower that overall investment. The federal government and the state of Rhode Island provide financial incentives to help lower these costs.

The federal government offers a solar tax credit that allows homeowners to save 30% on their solar panel purchases. It is called the Residential Clean Energy Credit, and will decrease to 26% in 2033. The federal credit can help you save thousands on your solar panel costs.

Rhode Island also has property and sales tax exemptions, meaning you won’t have an increased tax burden due to your solar panels. The state also offers incentives such as a small-scale solar grant program, net metering, and a Renewable Energy Growth (REG) program, which offers renewable energy credits to solar panel customers.

Why choose Rhode Island solar power?

There are a few key advantages to choosing solar power in Rhode Island, including reducing your energy costs, establishing energy independence, and helping the environment.

Lower energy costs 

Installing solar panels on your home can drastically reduce your energy costs. When you have solar panels, you can use that solar energy as your primary energy source instead of the traditional electricity grid. Solar panels will also increase the value of your home, which is money in your pocket if you decide to sell.

Establish energy independence

Another benefit of solar panels is the opportunity to establish energy independence, meaning you’re not fully reliant on the traditional electricity grid to power your home. When you’re energy independent, you can use the excess energy stored in your solar batteries to power your home when energy demand is high or when there’s a local power outage.

Go green

Solar power is a renewable resource that does not emit harmful greenhouse gasses. Traditional power sources like coal or gas do emit greenhouse gasses such as carbon dioxide, which contribute to global warming. By choosing to power your home with solar panels, you can greatly reduce your overall carbon footprint.

Want to learn more about solar energy

Here at SaveOnEnergy, we’re your guide to everything solar energy, from checking your availability and discussing your home’s needs to getting you customized options to go solar with ease. Want to talk with a human? Call our dedicated solar advisors to discuss your solar energy options. Give us a call at 866-212-2908.

Should I buy or lease my solar panels?

The most cost-effective way to invest in solar power is to buy solar panels for your home. When you buy solar panels, you can take advantage of the federal and state tax incentives, which aren’t available when you sign a PPA or lease your panels. You’ll also enjoy the greatest long-term energy savings. Finally, purchasing solar panels can increase your home’s resale value by about $15,000.

However, purchasing solar panels is not always an option for everyone. Solar panel leases have helped to make solar power more accessible. You can opt for a lease if you’d rather avoid the large upfront cost of solar panels. Leasing can also be a great option if you rent your home and don’t want a permanent solution. Similar to leasing, you can also sign a solar PPA

You can also use solar energy through community solar programs. In these programs, the same solar facility can serve multiple families. Shared solar is a good option for people in multifamily buildings, renters, places where HOA rules prohibit the installation of solar panels, and for homeowners that don’t want to install the panels on their home.

Rhode Island solar panel companies

There is no shortage of great solar panel companies in Rhode Island, meaning you won’t have a problem finding an installer to help you build your custom solar panel system. If you’re considering installing solar panels on your home, use the solar resources from SaveOnEnergy to get familiar with the solar industry and to help you get connected with a local installer.

The history of solar power in Rhode Island

Solar power in Rhode Island dates back to the early 1980s when the state passed its solar easement regulations that allowed homeowners to use their property for solar. Other initiatives passed in the following years include the state’s utility restructuring, its Rhode Island Renewable Energy Fund (REF), and more. In the 2000s, the state has continued to invest in and incentivize solar power through its net metering program and financial incentives.

Today, Rhode Island ranks 29th in the nation for solar energy generation. Solar power accounts for nearly 9% of the state’s total electricity generation, enough to power more than 87,000 homes. The past five years have seen an increase in commercial, utility, residential, and community solar installations. The economy has also benefited from the solar industry since solar companies in the state create more than 1,000 jobs.

Important solar installation factors to consider

Installing solar panels on your home can help you reduce both your energy costs and your home’s environmental footprint. But they aren’t right for everyone, and there are a few things to consider before installing solar panels:

  1. Your home’s roof: The Department of Energy states that solar panels are best for south-facing roofs, those with slopes between 15 and 40 degrees, and those in good condition.
  2. The amount of sunlight you get: For solar panels to operate efficiently, they need to be installed in an area that gets a great deal of sun. If your roof is heavily shaded or you don’t get a lot of sunshine, you may want to look at other solar options.
  3. HOA or community rules: If you have a homeowners association, you may be restricted by the size of solar panels you can have or may need approval to install them.

Solar power FAQs

  • The cost of solar panels in Rhode Island ranges from $15,000 to $25,000. But that price can be reduced through the tax credits offered by both the federal government and the state of Rhode Island.

  • Solar power in Rhode Island has been shown to be a good investment, and solar energy has become an important source of energy generation in the state. However, you’ll want to consider your location, energy use habits, and weather patterns before deciding to install solar panels in Rhode Island.

  • The amount you can save with solar panels depends on the amount of energy your solar panels generate and your energy usage habits. Rhode Island residents pay an average electricity bill of $133 per month, meaning you could expect to save around $1,144 per year.

  • With many great solar installers to choose from, you’ll want to do your homework before you make a selection. SaveOnEnergy also has resources to help you find the right solar installer for your needs.

  • Solar power is a renewable resource, meaning it never runs out. It’s also a green energy source, meaning it doesn’t emit harmful greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere, which reduces your carbon footprint. 

Solar energy by state