Guide to Going Solar with Florida Power & Light (FP&L)
January 16, 2024
Contrary to what one might expect, Florida, known as the Sunshine State, is not the leader in solar adoption – that designation lies with the state of California, followed by Nevada and Hawaii. What Florida does lead in is high electricity rates, which, according to Energy Sage, are 34% higher than the national average.
Fortunately, there is a hack to your electricity bill if you are a resident of the state. Florida Power & Light1 (FP&L) launched SolarTogether in 2020 as a way to support community solar projects directly through an innovative solar subscription program. Even more lucrative for homeowners? A net metering program2 for solar power systems up to 2,000 kW of capacity – an amount hundreds of times larger than the typical home installation!
Read on to learn about Florida solar incentives and how net metering works for homeowners under Florida Power & Light.
Does Florida Power & Light Offer Net Metering?
Florida offers a net metering program that covers all customers of investor-owned utilities, including Florida Power & Light. There are also several municipal and rural co-op utilities that are part of the program as well.
What is solar net metering? Typically, solar PV systems hit peak production around midday, and there may be times when they generate more energy than your household needs. Net metering allows for this excess solar energy to be fed into the local electricity grid, earning you credits that can be applied to your utility bill. Savings in the solar bank!
FPL’s Net Metering Program
FPL offers an expansive net metering program, collaborating with customers and contractors to facilitate secure and efficient connections to the grid for renewable energy sources like solar panels.
This program aims to counterbalance some or all of the customer’s energy consumption at their metered service account. It’s important to note that the systems should not be so large that they’re expected to produce more than 115 percent of the customer’s annual kWh usage. This is a specification that will be reviewed upon submission of your application.
Based on the capacity of their solar systems, homeowners participating in net metering are sorted into three tiers. These tiers dictate the insurance requirements and application fees for each homeowner.
Most residential systems using solar power in Florida will fall in Tier 1, which includes solar PV capacities under 10kW. In this category, there are no application fees or the need for proof of liability insurance.
Do They Offer Rebates & Incentives?
Florida solar power incentives work to encourage homeowners to make the leap to renewable energy. The Property Tax Abatement for Renewable Energy Property,3 which omits home improvements like solar installations from yearly taxes, and the one time Solar and CHP Sales Tax Exemption,4 which excludes state taxes from the retail purchase of your PV system. These rebates and incentives, combined with the federal solar tax credit (also called the Investment Tax Credit or ITC), make solar installations more accessible than ever!
While FPL does not offer exclusive incentives or rebates, they offer several unique programs geared towards business and community solar adoption.
Designed to provide businesses with a straightforward and cost-effective way to install solar panels without any upfront capital costs, the FPL SolarVantage allows businesses to take advantage of solar energy, aligning with FPL’s ambitious Real Zero™ goal of eliminating carbon emissions from its power plant fleet. This includes aiding businesses in installing covered parking that doubles as solar panel real estate or other free standing structures that help businesses to utilize space for renewable energy generation.
SolarNow is an initiative by FPL aimed at bringing solar energy closer to communities across Florida. This voluntary program allows customers to support the development of solar projects in their local communities.
For a contribution of $9 a month, or about 30 cents a day, participants help fund the installation of solar energy projects, from solar trees to solar canopies and walkways. These installations are not only visually appealing but also educational, offering an opportunity for the public to learn more about solar energy!
Available to all FP&L customers, SolarTogether is a great option for those who rent or own a home and condo that isn’t ideal for a solar installation. The solar energy produced through SolarTogether isn’t delivered directly to the participating customer’s residence. Instead, solar energy is added to the FPL grid, and participants receive credits on their monthly bills based on their subscription level and the amount of solar energy produced by the program.
FP&L Solar Community Programs
SolarTogether is FP&L’s flagship community solar program. In comparison, net metering in Florida is usually limited to those who own their residence, while community solar benefits those who rent as well. It’s also ideal if a homeowner is limited on space that would allow for a solar PV installation. As of today, the FP&L SolarTogether program is supported by 15 solar power plants, with ten more soon to join.
Is Going Solar with FP&L Worth It?
The Sunshine State is beaming with excellent incentives and rebates to start your solar journey off on the right foot. What kind of savings can you expect? For example, an average residential 6 kW solar panel system can generate between 9,000 and 10,000 kWh per year. As of December 2023, Florida residents pay an average electricity rate of 11.37 cents per kWh. This yields an annual electricity bill savings between $1,023 to $1,137 every year! That’s money you can use to reinvest in solar battery storage!
Choosing a Solar Panel Installer in Florida