With the cost of a installing a residential solar system 43% less than just 12 years ago, its never been easier to use clean, green solar energy. Still not certain if your home needs solar? Here are seven signs that home solar will change your life.
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1. Your Electric Bill is Skyrocketing
A recent analysis of government data conducted by USA TODAY revealed that households paid an average of $1,419 for electricity in 2010. The increase marks the fifth consecutive year that costs have risen. Households pay 20% more for electricity than they did just five years ago. According to the study, about $1.50 out of every $100 of after-tax income goes to pay for electricity.
For this reason alone, solar power is an enormous relief on yearly energy costs. By going solar, you’ll see savings on your bill immediately—savings that will only increase as electricity costs rise in the years to come. Many homeowners see at least 40% savings on their electricity costs right off the bat.
2. You Want Protection Against Future Electric Costs
Continually rising energy costs are here to stay, reversing a 25-year trend when costs remained stable, even when usage increased. Electrical companies say the rate increases are necessary to replace old power plants. Widespread use of residential solar systems lessens the need to build those power plants that derive their energy from fossil fuel, a win-win for the environment and homeowners alike.
3. You Live in a Sunny Climate
In areas with ample sunlight, a residential solar system is a no-brainer. Solar panels operate at their highest efficiency in direct sunlight, often generating more power than the home is using. In most states, whenever that happens, the surplus energy goes back into the electrical grid, and the homeowner is either paid or credited for it.
4. You Want to Take Advantage of Incentives
Right now, solar rebates offer you substantial savings on solar installation costs. The federal program alone saves you up to 30% off the cost to install a PV system. Most incentive programs have an expiration date, however, and in todays political climate, continuation of many programs are uncertain. Fast action is recommended.
To see how much you can save with solar incentives, click here.
5. Your Consumption of Electricity is Climbing
According to a 2005 Energy Information Administration report, by 2035, energy consumption is expected to nearly double. Although energy-efficient appliances have become more widespread, residential consumption of electricity is still increasing. Larger homes, more electronics and a wider use of air conditioning are driving the increase in consumption.
But solar offers unique solutions to these problems. Besides reducing your fossil-fuel consumption, it was recently proven that solar panels actually cool your home, simply by absorbing heat and providing another layer of insulation for your roof. The savings from extra insulation are equivalent to getting a 5% discount on your system.
6. You Like to Be Kind to the Environment
The last dozen years have seen 10 of the warmest years on record. The oceans of the world absorb much of this heat, transforming sea environments and raising sea levels. Since 1995, the rate of glacier retreat has accelerated the world over, from the Rockies to the Himalayas, threatening critical freshwater supplies and increasing the risk of widespread flooding.
Solar is our best chance at widespread renewable energy implementation from the ground up.
7. You Want to Promote Personal Responsibility
Many Americans are anxious to do what they can to make the world better for the generations that follow. Residential solar systems show a desire to accept personal responsibility for a personal expenditure of energy—an investment that’s honorable beyond compare.