At the end of 2020 in the United States, there were about 2.7 million residential solar systems.
As they become more popular, the number keeps growing and growing, and more people are looking for solar panels.
If you’re in that category, there are a few things you need to do before your solar panel installation. Keep reading to learn how you should prepare!
Estimate Your Needs
First, you’ll want to estimate your electricity needs. This will determine how many panels you install on your home to have enough electricity.
You will need to check your electricity bill and find how many kilowatt-hours you use each month. You should also factor in any changes that you might be planning for your home.
For example, if you are going to make any planned changes to your home, like expanding the home, you’ll need more electricity options.
Inspect Your Roof
Before you can have a solar installation on your roof, you’ll need to inspect it. Unless you have roofing experience, you might want to work with a contractor or professional who can inspect it.
Sometimes the solar panel company will also come out and inspect the roof for you before installing any panels. They’ll need to figure out if your roof is large enough and how many solar panels you can fit there.
If there are any issues with your roof, you’ll have to fix them before the solar panels can be installed.
Make Any Repairs
You’ll need to make sure that your roof is structurally sound enough to hold all of the heavy solar panels. The surface area and weight of them are important factors for your roof.
These roof upgrades may or may not be invasive, but they could be an expensive and extensive project. The scope of the project will vary depending on how old your roof is and what style it is.
For example, many solar panels are mounted on roofs that are sloped and facing south. However, a roof that faces east or west can still work, but you may need to angle the position to get enough sunlight.
Once you’ve determined that your roof is structurally sound, you’ll need to acquire all of the permits as well. This can vary depending on the city and state that you’re living in, so you should check your local government site.
Many utility companies will require you to have these permits before they can start installing them. Sometimes they will acquire them on your behalf.
They’ll need to have an electrical permit. Sometimes this permit requires a professional to do an electrical inspection on your home before they replace the power meter, so you’ll need to schedule that as well.
The federal and local governments are offering different tax breaks and incentives to convince people to get solar panel installation. However, this depends on the area you’re living in and when you get them installed.
As time goes on, the tax credit benefits will decrease as they become more popular. For solar PV systems that are installed before 2035, there is a 22% to 26% tax credit available. There also isn’t a maximum amount that you can claim.
You’ll only be eligible for that ITC tax credit if you purchase that solar equipment. If you’re leasing solar equipment, then you won’t be eligible for that benefit since you don’t own it.
In addition to using these tax benefits, there are also solar financing options. There are different options available for homeowners, but you should explore all of them.
After doing all of this, you’ll get a better idea of what your solar panel budget looks like. This will help you find the right contractor who can work within that budget.
In addition to that, you’ll also be able to find credits, grants, and rebates just for installing these solar power systems at your home.
You can also try to offset the cost of the solar panels by selling back your generated power back to the grid. For this, you’ll have to install a local electric company.
The production meter measures the amount of electricity that you generate, and when you don’t use it, you can sell it back and get a rebate.
Find the Right Contractor
If you haven’t already, you need to find the right contractor. As solar power becomes more popular, there are more contractors out there that you can work with.
Depending on where you live, you should have a few different options. You should research each different manufacturer and also read different reviews. If you’re still not sure of who to work with, ask for recommendations from friends and family!
You’ll want to work with someone who has a lot of experience and is also local. They’ll know the requirements for your state and permitting requirements. You should also make sure the contractor is licensed to work in your state.
Once you find the right contractor, you can install solar panels today!
Learn More About How to Prepare for Solar Panel Installation
These are only a few things you need to know to prepare for solar panel installation, but there are many other things you should add to your to-do list.
If you’re still unsure of what needs to be done, contact your solar panel contractor and ask them for more information.
If you’re still nervous about the solar panel installation, check out our website to discover more articles that can help!
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