4 Factors that Drive Rooftop Solar Costs
How much will a rooftop solar energy system cost to install at your home or business?
We have no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. The price of making the switch to photovoltaic power can vary significantly, as every system installation is different.
Professional PV contractors provide free estimates, and an individual consultation is the best way to determine your rooftop solar costs. But generally speaking, the overall financial investment for your photovoltaic system will be based on four factors.
No. 1: Rooftop Solar Equipment
How many photovoltaic panels do you need to power your home or business? The size of your PV array plays a large role in determining rooftop solar costs.
Your choice of equipment also affects photovoltaic system pricing. For example, do you prefer to use the low-cost polycrystalline PV panels, or would you rather spend a little more for more efficient monocrystalline modules?
And what about your power inverter? Do you plan to use a string inverter or micro-inverters for your system? You must also make decisions about how you want to mount the modules and whether you want to add solar power storage components.
You won’t be able to determine your final solar costs until you decide on the specific equipment you will need for your PV array.
No. 2: Rooftop and Property Characteristics
During your professional PV consultation, your contractor will evaluate your roof and the surrounding property.
Your roof needs plenty of shade-free space to accommodate the solar panels. For an efficient photovoltaic system, a south- or west-facing rooftop is ideal. If yours doesn’t have enough space, or if it faces east or north, a ground-mounted PV array may be a more cost-effective option.
If your roof has structural concerns or damage, you might need to make repairs prior to your rooftop solar installation.
The placement of your PV panel array also influences overall solar costs, as rooftop and ground-mounted photovoltaic systems require different installation equipment and methods.
No. 3: Rooftop Solar Installation Factors
Labor, permitting, sales tax and overhead costs can vary by geographic location and contractor with a photovoltaic installation.
That said, you can expect to pay more for a large, time-consuming photovoltaic project. In addition, challenges such as working on a steep roof surface, navigating multiple rooftop obstructions or adding a perimeter screen to avoid squirrel damage can affect your final rooftop solar costs.
No. 4: PV Solar Incentives
Fortunately, any available financial incentives for PV system installation in your area will bring down photovoltaic costs, sometimes by a significant amount.
Every individual or business that installs a PV array qualifies for the 30 percent federal solar tax credit.
Other financial incentives will vary based on your location. Rebates, tax credits and grants at the state and local levels can differ widely, so determining how these will affect your solar costs requires knowledge of the offers available in your area.
If you would like to know exactly how much it will cost to switch to photovoltaic power, call Intermountain Wind & Solar for a free estimate. As the leading photovoltaic provider for Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado and Nevada, we can answer all your questions about rooftop solar costs and help you make the switch to renewable energy.