Generate clean, renewable energy from the sun shining on your home. It’s easier than ever to install a solar photovoltaic (PV) system and reduce electricity costs. This program can help you purchase a solar system or lease one with little to no upfront cost.
Residential Solar Investment Program
Harness the Power of the Sun
Residential Solar Investment Program
Make a smart investment in your home, and in a clean energy future
Install a solar photovoltaic (PV) system and reduce your electricity costs with a proven, reliable, pollution-free technology. It’s now an affordable smart energy choice for Connecticut homeowners. The Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority (CEFIA) provides incentives to offset the cost of your investment.
Buying a solar PV system is an investment in the future. Although buying a PV system may require an upfront payment, it can deliver significant energy cost savings for years to come. A lease option, which requires little or no money down, can be an attractive alternative that could provide immediate savings on your electric bill.
A number of factors determine what a system will cost and how much you can save over time, including the future price of electricity and how long your system operates. Connecticut residents pay an average of 18 cents per kilowatt hour for electricity from utilities. By combining Connecticut incentives, utility net metering credits for the power you generate, federal tax incentives and low-interest financing, you could realize long-term cost savings over the life of your PV system. The more electricity prices climb, the faster you’ll see savings. Consult a tax advisor regarding potential tax savings.
Steps to Take Smart Energy Action
Step 1 -
Complete an energy assessment for your home. Schedule your assessment through the Home Energy Solutions program or with an independent contractor certified by the Building Performance Institute, Inc., a certified energy manager, a certified energy auditor or a professional engineer. Your assessment will identify cost-effective ways to save energy in your home. Make your home as efficient as possible.
Step 2 -
Work with a CEFIA-approved contractor. The contractor will review your project with you, provide information about solar systems and assist you with your incentives application. Find an approved contractor.
As with any significant purchase, shop around when considering purchasing a solar system. Gather as much information as possible, check contractor references and obtain multiple quotes.
Step 3 -
Install your system. CEFIA will pay the incentive directly to the installer, who passes the savings on to you by reducing the total system cost.
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Residential Solar Incentives
CEFIA offers two incentive models to help you go solar:
1. Purchase a solar system for your home
The Expected Performance-Based Buydown incentive provides you with a lump-sum payment based on major design characteristics of your system, such as panel type, installation tilt, shading, orientation and solar insolation (a measure of solar radiation energy on a given area).
Incentives are tiered, with a higher rate for the first 5 kilowatts (kW) and a lower rate for the second 5 kW. CEFIA does not provide incentives for any portion of a system that exceeds 10 kW.
Your incentive is calculated with the following maximum rates per watt:
- Up to 5 kW: $1.75/watt
- Greater than 5 kW up to 10 kW: $0.55/watt
Qualify for a five percent bonus if your system includes major components principally manufactured in Connecticut, with an additional bonus if they are principally manufactured in a Connecticut distressed municipality.
2. Lease a system with little or no upfront costs
The Performance-Based Incentive (PBI) is designed to allow homeowners to benefit from solar PV systems for little to no upfront cost. Under this model, an Eligible Third-Party PV System Owner owns the system and enters into a contract with the homeowner. The PBI is paid to the System Owner based on actual performance over the course of 6 years, and is used to reduce the homeowner’s monthly cost. The PBI model also provides an additional bonus for projects that use major system components principally manufactured in Connecticut. CEFIA does not provide incentives for any portion of a system that exceeds 10 kW.
Your incentive is calculated with the following rate per watt:
- Up to 10 kW: $0.225/watt
Modifications to the Residential Solar Investment Progam effective January 4, 2013:
- Rebate (EPBB) incentive payment schedule:
- 70% of incentive paid upon delivery of installation materials at job site; and,
- 30% once the installation is complete and has passed all inspections.
- Installations with a Design Factor (Azimuth, Tilt and Shading) that meet or exceed 87% will receive the full incentive rate (EPBB or Performance Based Incentive (PBI)); installations that have a Design Factor less than 87% will receive an incentive reduced in proportion to the Design Factor percentage.
- A HES or equivalent energy efficiency audit must be completed and submitted to CEFIA prior to remittance of the final incentive payment for EPBB installations, or beginning PBI payments for Purchase Power Agreement and Lease installations.
- Incentives for all installations will be capped at the lesser of the calculated incentive or 35% of total installation cost.
Your Connecticut Neighbors Are Going Solar
Take a look at an Excel spreadsheet of residential solar installations in Connecticut for information on system costs, sizes, contractors installing systems and other details. (Requires Microsoft Excel to view, sort and print the information. If you do not have Microsoft Excel installed, click here to install the free MS Excel Viewer.)
Read the Residential Solar Investment Program Weekly Market Watch Report - Updated May 10, 2013.
Who Is Eligible?
If your home is in the CL&P or UI service territories and offers a good location for a solar system, you can qualify for residential solar incentives.
What Makes a Good Location for a Solar System?
- A roof facing south, southeast or southwest – Although a roof is the best location, a system can also be installed on the ground if a roof cannot be used.
- A 35 to 50 degree roof tilt –This allows for optimal year-round energy production. A solar system can also be placed on a flat roof using a racking system.
- Clear access to the sun for most of the day – The location should be unobstructed by trees, roof-gables, chimneys, buildings and other features of your home or surrounding landscape.
- Adequate space on your roof or property – A typical solar system requires an average of 100 square feet per kilowatt.
- A roof in good condition –If your roof needs to be replaced in the very near future, you may want to replace it before the solar system is installed to avoid the cost of removing and reinstalling your system.
If you are a Connecticut resident and a customer of Connecticut Light and Power or The United Illuminating Company, you may qualify for affordable financing to purchase or lease your solar PV system.
For more details on the CT Solar Loan residential financing program, please visit http://www.energizect.com/ctsolarloan.
Please check back for details on other CEFIA financing opportunities that will be available in early Spring 2013.
Finally, certain installers currently offer independent options to purchase or lease a solar PV system.