South Carolina Solar Panels: Pricing and Incentives

How much do solar panels cost in South Carolina?

Written by Erin Gobler

Edited by Madison Khalil

Last updated 10/25/2022

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Solar power in South Carolina

South Carolina got a late start when it comes to the solar energy industry, but it has quickly caught up. The state now sits in the top 15 states for solar power generation. Policies like the state’s solar tax credit and net metering have made solar power more attractive, making it easy for residents to invest.

If you live in South Carolina, you could save money on energy by installing solar panels on your home. Keep reading to learn more about the costs and benefits of solar power and whether solar panels are right for your home.

South Carolina solar panel cost

The cost of solar panels in South Carolina depends on several key factors, including the size of your system, its configuration, the components including, and your local labor and permitting costs. On average, homeowners pay between $3 and $5 per watt for solar panels, and the average 5-kW system costs between $15,000 and $25,000 before tax credits and rebates.

Luckily, solar panels can also save you money. When you account for your energy savings and other incentives you may be eligible for, you can expect to break even on your solar panels within 6-9 years.

Ready to go solar? Call 866-526-9899 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

South Carolina solar incentives or rebates

While solar panels may be a large investment, the federal government and many state and local governments have created many policies to help homeowners save on their solar panel purchases.

First, the federal government offers a 30% tax credit when you purchase solar panels on your first or second home. Called the Residential Clean Energy Credit, it can help you receive thousands of dollars back from your initial investment.

South Carolina also has a tax credit for solar panel purchases. You can claim 25% of the cost of your panels. Between the state and federal tax credit, you can actually reduce your solar panel cost by more than half! Other ways to save in South Carolina include the state’s net metering policy and incentives offered by certain utility companies.

Why choose South Carolina solar power?

There are three key benefits to installing solar panels on your home: reduced energy costs, energy independence, and a reduced environmental footprint.

Lower energy costs

One of the most important benefits of installing solar panels is lowering your energy costs. When you pay for traditional electricity, you could spend more than $1,000 per year. However, when you have solar panels to power your home, you can reduce or eliminate those electricity bills.

Establish energy independence

Solar panels also allow homeowners to achieve energy independence, meaning you aren’t only reliant on the traditional electricity grid to power your home. When you have energy independence, you don’t have to worry about price hikes when energy demand is high. If you have a solar battery, you don’t have to worry about power outages due to storms or downed power lines. Instead, you can use your stored solar energy to power your home.

Go green

Traditional electricity generation emits carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, which contributes to climate change. Solar power is a renewable energy source, and producing it doesn’t emit those same harmful gasses. As a result, solar panels can reduce your home’s environmental 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 866-526-9899.

Should I buy or lease my solar panels?

When you’re installing solar panels on your home, you can choose to either buy or lease your panels. You can also sign a solar PPA if you want to avoid buying solar panels upfront. While each option has unique advantages, buying your own panels is most cost-effective. First, buying your solar panels allows you to take advantage of both the state and federal tax credits, which can cut your costs in half. You’ll also have greater long-term energy savings and can increase your home’s resale value by $15,000 on average.

While leasing solar panels may not be quite as cost-effective in the long run, it has some major advantages. First, because of its lower cost, leasing solar panels makes solar power more accessible. You also don’t have to pay as much upfront. It’s also ideal for those who rent their homes since it probably doesn’t make sense to buy panels. 

Another option in some areas is a community solar program. Through these programs, participants can sign up, and then share the solar power that’s generated by the project. Participants don’t have to pay a large upfront cost as they would to buy solar panels, and they don’t even have to install panels on their homes.

South Carolina solar panel companies

Because green energy is becoming more prevalent in South Carolina, there are more and more companies providing these services. When searching for the best South Carolina solar panel company, be sure to thoroughly research all of your options. Read reviews, ask for customer references, and research the company’s history before signing a contract. You can also find solar panel guides and resources with SaveOnEnergy to make the shopping experience clearer.

The history of solar power in South Carolina

While other states began implementing policies in the 1970s and 80s, South Carlina passed its first policy in 2006 with its Solar Energy Tax Credit. Other policies since then have included the state’s distributed energy resource program, net metering, and renewable energy credits policies implemented by individual utility companies.

It’s safe to say that South Carolina’s investments in solar power have paid off. Today, the state ranks 14th in the nation for solar energy generation. Solar power accounts for 2.63% of the state’s electricity, which is enough to power more than 245,000 homes. Over the past five years, the state has seen an increase in residential, commercial, community, and utility solar installations.

Important solar installation factors to consider

Solar power can be a great investment, but there are a few things to consider before you install solar panels on your home:

  • Your roof: According to the Department of Energy, solar panels are best for south-facing roofs with slopes between 15 and 40 degrees, as well as those in good condition.
  • The amount of sunlight your home gets: Solar panels require sunlight to produce energy, meaning they’re most effective if your home gets lots of sunshine.
  • Your neighborhood: If you have a homeowners association in your neighborhood, there may be restrictions for solar panels or you may need approval to install them.

Solar power FAQs

  • A full residential solar power system is likely to cost between $15,000 and $25,000. Your exact cost will depend on the size, components, and configuration of your system, as well as local labor and permitting costs.

  • Solar power can provide huge savings, but it’s not right for everyone. When deciding if solar panels are right for your home, consider the weather patterns in your state and how much sunlight your home gets. Also, consider your energy usage habits.

  • South Carolina residents pay some of the highest energy bills in the nation, meaning there are plenty of opportunities to save. The average electricity bill in South Carolina is nearly $150 per month, and the average resident could save about $894 per year.

  • If you’re in the market for a solar panel installer, SaveOnEnergy can help. Enter your information in the form on the screen and we’ll connect you with a solar installer in your area.

  • Solar power is a renewable resource. Unlike traditional electricity generation, solar power doesn’t emit harmful greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere to contribute to climate change.

Solar energy by state