Texas Solar Incentives and Rebates
Harnessing the abundant Texas sunshine to produce your own green energy just makes sense! The cost of putting solar panels on your home or business will vary based on your energy costs, the utility's net metering policies, and solar power rebates and other financial incentives.
Federal, State, and Local Incentives
Let's start with the federal incentive. The Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) is a federal tax credit that is a dollar for dollar reduction on income taxes. It’s a step down plan, so now through December of 2019, the credit is 30%. From the 1st of 2020 however, the credit decreases. For the entirety of 2020, it will equal 26%. The ITC then decreases to 22% throughout 2021, and down to 10% for any completed project after January 1st of 2022. The sooner you act, the more money you will save.
The state of Texas does not offer a statewide solar tax credit, but most local utilities do offer incentives to go solar, add battery backup, or to make home improvements related to energy efficiency (check this website for detailed information). The rebate structure and availability varies across the state, but most utilities offer rebates to homeowners and business owners on a price-per-watt basis that is capped at a maximum amount per project. The funds may be available in perpetuity or released on a periodic (e.g. annual) basis for residential and/or commercial solar installations, The utilities have an application process for each project, which your solar installer will manage for you.
There are other local incentives as well. Some areas, such as Austin, offer a property tax exemption, for solar power customers.
Net Metering Programs
Some utilities offer a solar rebate, and others participate in net metering. Net metering is a billing arrangement between the property owner and the utility company that allows overproduced energy to be sold back to the grid. This money usually is applied as a credit in the next billing cycle. Net metering may only be available to specific customers, so we recommend calling your provider to ask if they participate.
In competitive (deregulated) electricity markets across Texas, solar rebates and net metering (or solar buyback programs) may be available through your Retail Electric Provider (REP). For example, solar buyback programs are available from TXU, Reliant, and Green Mountain. There are hundreds of REPs operating in Texas, so check with your preferred company to ask about their solar program.
List of Local Solar Incentives
The solar rebates and policies for the utility companies and cooperatives below are subject to change at any time. We strive to update this page regularly with the latest information and recommend that you contact your utility directly to confirm their current program.
AEP serves a multitude of cities in Texas including Corpus Christi, Abilene, McAllen, Harlingen, and others. AEP North offers a rebate of $0.70 per watt, up to a total of $90,000 for residential customers and $73,590 for non- residential customers. AEP Central offers a rebate of $0.70 per watt, up to a total of $7,000 for residential customers and $7,000 for non- residential customers. AEP operates in a competitive electricity market, so a net metering program would be handled by your retail electric provider (REP), if available. More incentives can be found on their website.
Austin Energy is currently offering a flat $2,500 rebate for those that go solar, as well as net metering. Residential customers receive a Value of Solar credit on their monthly bill for every kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electricity generated by their solar PV system, at the current rate of 9.7 cents per kWh (effective January 1, 2018). Commercial net metering is available for systems under 20 kW-AC.Austin Energy also offers a community solar option for residential customers and a “Green Choice Plan”, which are both great options for those that do not own their home but want to use clean electricity. More info can be found here.
CoServ serves Northern Texas and offers a periodic solar rebate that is typically released in June. The 2018 rebate, which became available on June 1st and ran out of funds in late October, offered $450/kW DC, with a maximum of $4,500 per residential Member and $30,000 per commercial Member. Learn more here.
CPS serves the San Antonio area. There is a solar rebate available for residential and commercial projects. As of December 1st, 2018, the residential rebate has changed to a flat incentive at $2,500 per project, which will drop to $1,500 per project when the current funding pool is fully allocated. The commercial solar rebate remains at $0.60/watt. Funds for both rebates are limited and available on a first-come, first-serve basis. There are some requirements, which can be found here.
Get Customized Incentive Data
To learn more about the incentives and policies that are available to make solar panels a more attractive financial investment for your home or business, contact us for a free consultation.