How Much Do Solar Panels Cost in Orlando

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How Much Do Solar Panels Cost in Orlando

The city of Orlando has established ambitious objectives to decrease energy consumption and enhance efficiency, setting its sights on using 100% clean and renewable energy sources by 2050. 

The region’s goal won’t see much pushback from the weather, with an average of over 230 sunny days per year. This makes Orlando a veritable hot spot for those looking to invest in solar energy. Thanks to local incentives offered by the Orlando Utilities Commission (OUC)1, harnessing the sun’s power can provide homeowners and businesses with a significant return on investment. 

How can you get started on going solar in Orlando? Read on to find out how your renewable investment breaks down. 

Cost of Home Solar Panels in Orlando

The ultimate cost will be determined by varying factors such as size,  system capacity, and solar panel type. As of January 2024, MarketWatch reports that the typical cost of solar panels in Florida, including installation, is approximately $3.31 per watt, which is just above the national average of $2.85 per watt. 

What does this look like for an average home solar photovoltaic (PV) system? An 8 kW installation will cost approximately $26,480 before incentives2 and includes: 

  • Solar panels
  • Mounting equipment
  • Inverters
  • Conduit and other components
  • Installation labor
  • Project management, including HOA approvals, permitting, and inspections

On average, Freedom Solar customers spend only $138 per month when they finance an 8 kilowatt (kW) residential SunPower system — this is before local rebates and tax incentives come into effect based on your city and state. And some customers pay as little as $83 per month.

You can use our solar panel estimate module to give yourself a general idea. Below, we’ll also cover the federal tax credit, which brings the average cost down by 30%.

How Much Will Solar Save You? 

The intangible savings to having a solar system are many – safety during outages, peace of mind that you’re doing the right thing for the planet, an increase in the value of your home, and grid independence are just a few. 

Over time, you’ll also save some cold hard cash that can go into other energy efficiency upgrades. Potential savings will depend on electricity consumption, your solar system’s size, whether you buy or lease your system, and its generation capacity based on your roof’s orientation and sunlight exposure. Your savings will also be influenced by the utility’s electricity rates and their compensation for any surplus solar energy you export to the grid if net metering programs are available through your local utility provider. 

On average, solar panels can save homeowners between $20,000 and $96,0003 over the lifetime of the system – on average 30 to 35 years3 if they are regularly maintained. 

Orlando Solar Incentives & Rebates

OUC Solar Thermal Rebate Program

The Orlando Utilities Commission (OUC) offers residential electric customers a rebate of $900 through the Solar Thermal Rebate Program4. If you choose to use an OUC Preferred Solar Contractor, they will provide you with the OUC Solar Thermal rebate at the point of sale. They will then submit an application for reimbursement to OUC on your behalf. If you opt for a contractor that is not OUC preferred, you will be responsible for submitting the necessary documentation to OUC yourself. Once all requirements are met, the rebate will be credited to your account. 

Just an FYI, FSP is not a Preferred Solar Contractor.

Florida State Incentives

Florida Net Metering

Florida’s net metering program helps residents offset their energy consumption with the excess solar energy they generate. The program allows customers to receive credit on their utility bills for any excess electricity they generate. Florida has no capacity limit on how much surplus solar electricity you can sell back to the electric grid. Orlando Utilities Commission offers full-retail rate net metering.

CHP Sales Tax Exemption

Residents of the state can benefit from the Solar and CHP Sales Tax Exemption5, which exempts them from paying the 6% sales tax on solar panels.

Florida Property-Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Program

PACE6 is a state-level program where homeowners can get financial assistance for solar upgrades through a special assessment of their property taxes.

Federal

The federal government currently provides a 30% solar tax credit to offset the expenses associated with residential and commercial solar installations across the United States.

While the solar tax credit (a part of the Inflation Reduction Act) was initially set to expire in 2023, the recent extension until 2033 through the Inflation Reduction Act ensures that homeowners can continue to leverage it against the upfront costs of solar photovoltaic (PV) panel installation. 

Affordability Options: Leasing & Financing Solar in Orlando

Orlando is making solar energy more accessible through both leasing and financing options.

Solar Panel Leasing in Orlando

This program allows you to rent a solar photovoltaic (PV) system from a solar company or third-party provider. You pay a fixed monthly fee to use the solar energy system for a specific period, usually 20-25 years. You can opt to purchase the system or renew the lease at the end of the lease. Note that with this option, you may not be eligible for federal or state tax credits or incentives. 

Some lease programs allow you to purchase the system any time prior to the end of the lease.

Solar Financing in Orlando

Financing options for solar systems include solar loans and the PACE program mentioned above. 

Similar to a home improvement loan, solar loans can be secured or unsecured and are used to cover the cost of your solar panel system. You pay back the loan over time with interest. This option allows you to own your system outright and benefit from federal and state tax credits and incentives.

Solar Installers In Orlando to Help You Save

Stop paying for electricity and join the solar revolution! For your solar energy quote and help finding a solar installer in the Orlando area, contact Freedom Solar Power today. 


Resources

  1. https://www.ouc.com/
  2. https://www.marketwatch.com/guides/solar/solar-panel-cost-florida/
  3. https://www.energy.gov/eere/solar/end-life-management-solar-photovoltaics
  4. https://www.ouc.com/environment-community/ouc-solar-solutions/more-savings
  5. https://programs.dsireusa.org/system/program/detail/243
  6. https://floridapace.gov/about-pace/

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