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Sunny Georgia is a great state for switching to solar energy if you want to save on utility bills. In fact, Georgia has more than 5,350 solar jobs and has invested $5.6 billion in clean energy, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association.
If you’re one of the many Georgia residents interested in making the switch to a renewable energy source, you’ll be happy to know there are solar incentives that can help you save money. We’ve researched the best solar companies and compiled a list of Georgia’s most beneficial solar incentives.
Overview of Georgia Solar Incentives
Here are the solar incentives available to Georgians:
|Incentive||Where It Comes From||What You Get|
Local utility companies
Payment for selling your excess solar energy back to the grid
Federal solar tax credit
Ability to claim 30% of your system cost on your federal taxes
Georgia Solar Incentives, Tax Credits, and Rebates
While Georgia doesn’t have many of the local and state solar incentives other states do, residents can benefit from two of the most financially beneficial incentives: net-metering and the federal tax credit.
Net-metering is a rebate program many states offer. It allows you to sell your solar system’s excess energy to your local utility company for money back. The utility company uses that energy to power the electric grid. Participating utility companies measure the amount of excess solar energy you add to the grid and pay you a rate determined by Georgia’s Public Service Commission.
Georgia Power offers customers the top utility net-metering program in the state, with Jackson EMC being a close second. All residential-size systems qualify for net-metering.
Federal Tax Credit
The federal investment tax credit (ITC) is the most lucrative incentive for qualifying homeowners. The federal solar tax credit, sometimes referred to as the Renewable Clean Energy Credit, allows you to claim a percentage of your total system cost on your federal income taxes the year you install the system. This percentage has changed throughout the years, but it’s now set at 30% until 2033. Georgia’s average home solar system costs around $15,500, so you can claim nearly $5,000 as a valid expense on your tax form.
Only those who fully own their system can apply, including those who finance it through a solar loan or purchase it in full at the time of installation. Those who choose a solar lease or power purchase agreement (PPA) financing option do not own their system and therefore do not qualify.
Currently, the ITC is a one-time credit, but you can carry excess credit to the next tax year if you can’t use it all when you file. For example, if you owe $3,000 in taxes the year you install the system and get a $4,000 tax credit, you’ll owe $0 on that year’s federal tax bill and reduce next year’s by the leftover $1,000.
You can claim the solar tax credit when you file your yearly federal tax return. Let your accountant know in advance. If you manage your taxes yourself, you’ll need to fill out IRS Form 5695.
Georgia Solar Costs
EnergySage calculates the average cost of solar panels in Georgia is around $15,450. That’s an average of $3.09 per watt. The national average solar panel system cost is more than $20,000, so Georgia residents enjoy a smaller investment.
Is Going Solar in Georgia Worth the Investment?
Despite fewer solar incentives than some states, Georgia is still a rewarding state for making the switch to solar energy. A climate of year-round sun exposure means your solar power system absorbs plenty of sunlight and will have no problem powering the average home. You’ll see a reduction in your electric bills while also reducing your carbon footprint and increasing your home’s energy efficiency.
Your solar provider can help you further determine the solar incentives you qualify for and file the necessary applications. If you’re ready to go solar, we recommend Georgia solar companies SunPower, ADT Solar, and Palmetto Solar for their strong customer satisfaction and high-efficiency solar products.
Before hiring a solar provider, we suggest reading customer reviews, speaking with customer support representatives, analyzing warranties, and getting a quote from at least three companies for comparison.
Georgia Solar Incentives FAQ
Does Georgia have solar incentives?
Georgia does not have government-sponsored state and local incentives, but residents benefit from utility companies‘ net-metering programs. Those who purchase their solar panel system outright or through a solar loan also qualify for the federal solar investment tax credit.
Is solar tax exempt in Georgia?
No, Georgia is not a state that waives taxes related to solar equipment. That means residents don’t get a sales or property tax exemption like some states do.
How much does it cost to install solar panels in Georgia?
The average solar installation in Georgia ranges from $13,132 to $17,768, with the average gross price coming in at $15,450.
Can you sell solar power back to the grid in Georgia?
Georgia residents can participate in net-metering programs through local utility companies to sell their excess solar energy to the power grid. Georgia Power and Jackson EMC are two utility companies offering customers solar rebates. Net-metering is a great way to save money while lowering energy bills.
How We Chose the Top Solar Companies
We researched and analyzed dozens of solar panels and solar installation companies. We then formulated a rating system based on each solar installer or manufacturer’s services and products. We weighed several significant factors, including the quality and type of solar panels offered, the customer support network, warranty lengths and limitations, and additional benefits such as mobile apps for monitoring and customer service.
Speaking directly to representatives, we determined how each solar company personalizes its solar panel installation for each home. We also analyzed each company’s warranty options to ensure their product and performance guarantees match or exceed industry standards.
We evaluated each provider based on their rating and history with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) to determine reputation. In addition, we analyzed the 100 most recent Google Reviews for each provider across various locations and branches.
Read more: Our Methodology