Whenever people think about the benefits of solar energy, two things always spring to mind. The first is saving money on monthly energy bills, and the second is decreasing our dependence on fossil fuels that have a negative impact on the environment. While both are certainly massive benefits of solar energy, there are several other related benefits that most people aren’t aware of. Let’s take a look at the variety of benefits that solar energy provides to better understand the financial benefits of solar power.
Increased Property Value
Though most people only associate solar energy with reduced energy bills, they also increase the property value of your home. Studies have shown a correlation between solar panels and the length of time houses stay on the market. NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory) performed a study that showed homes equipped with solar panels sold on average 20% faster at a 17% higher value than homes lacking solar panels. While the housing market will always go up and down, you can take action to maintain the value of your property by adding solar panels.
In an effort to promote energy efficiency, the government offers tax credits to those who invest in solar technologies. Prior to 2009, there was a $2,000 limit on solar tax credits, but this cap has been removed. When you factor tax credits in with other incentives such as rebates and SRECs, there has never been a better time to purchase solar panels. These credits and incentives make the payback period shorter than it has ever been before.
Many solar energy technologies come with warranties that span decades so you won’t have to worry about the length of time they will generate electricity. Some offers include warranties that last up to 30 years, and the underlying technology has no moving parts which means little-to-no maintenance required. Despite the length of the warranty, you’ll find that many solar panels will last as long as 30 to 40 years.
We all know that solar panels are better for the environment, but a lot of people don’t consider that they are better for the economy as well. Currently, we are highly dependent on fossil fuels mined in foreign countries. The more people that invest in solar technologies, the less dependent we are on foreign markets for our energy. From a personal perspective, a homeowner that invests in solar technologies will also decrease their dependence on energy companies.
Often times, investing money in various markets is riddled with risks. Whether you invest in mutual funds or stock markets, you don’t always know if you will net a positive ROI. However, solar panels are an extremely secure long-term investment that can save you tens of thousands of dollars. Solar panels continually generate value because solar panels last for so long, require little maintenance, and harvest sunlight. In addition, after the payback period has been reached they essentially provide you with free energy.