Nationwide Home Solar Power Contractors and Information
Unfortunately, solar rebates are still hard to come by in Indiana, due primarily to the lack of a state renewables portfolio standard (RPS) that would require utilities in Indiana to get a certain percentage of their electricity from renewable sources by a certain date in time. Utility rebates for energy efficiency upgrades, such as new appliances and geothermal heat pumps, are fairly common, but solar remains largely neglected.
Still, there are a few small incentives for going solar in the Hoosier State, and they are as follows:
The state of Indiana does allow homeowners who install solar-powered roof vents or attic fans to deduct 50 percent of product cost, including materials and labor, from their income taxes on April 15th. Maximum incentive is $1,000 and proof of costs and names of suppliers or installers are required.
While this tax credit doesn’t explicitly include solar power, it does apply to Energy Star-rated water heaters, which some solar water heaters now are. The credit applies to 20% of the expenditure but is limited to $100 per tax year and carryover is not permitted. That’s not much when installing a solar water heater and is unlikely to cause a solar hot water revolution in Indiana, but it is something. See the Indiana Department of Revenue for more information.
Of solar applications, water heat, space heating and cooling, solar thermal process heat and pool heating (PV and passive systems are glaringly absent) are eligible for a property tax exemption in Indiana. No maximum incentive is specified and 100 percent of the added home value incurred by one of these solar systems is exempt from property taxes. The exemption is allowed every year that the qualifying system is functioning. The program started on March 1, 2010, although it began, in its original form, in 1975. More information is available from the Indiana Department of Local Government Finance (where you can find your local assessor).
Standing out among other solar-inactive utilities in Indiana, Indianapolis Power & Light is leading the way in Indiana with its Rate REP Renewable Energy Production program. Unfortunately, while the residential solar sector is included, small, home-sized systems are all but excluded. The incentive, which is essentially a voluntary feed-in tariff, begins with “small solar facilities” ranging from 20 kW to 100 kW in capacity, paying them 24 cents per kilowatt-hour produced. This will certainly help to get solar power up and running in Indianapolis, but does little for homeowners unless they have a whole bunch of roof space and money. Contracts must be signed with IPL under 10-year terms.
The state of Indiana does have net metering rules governing its investor-owned utilities (IOUs). Systems up to 10 kW in size may connect to the grid and receive retail-rate credits for excess solar power generated each month. The excess power is credited to the next monthly bill and carries over indefinitely. Renewable energy credits (RECs) are not addressed.
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