“I think the biggest barrier to solar installation is making sure you’re fully informed on what you’re buying, says Leroy Schaefer with Sunbelt Environmental Services. Leroy says whether it’s a commercial, industrial or residential application, you need to be sure solar is right for you. Steven Schaefer explains federal tax credits available to businesses that choose to install solar panels.
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- - Hi, I'm Steven Schaefer.
- And I'm Leroy Schaefer with Sunbelt Environmental Services and Sunbelt Solar.
I think the biggest barrier to solar installation is making sure that you're fully informed on what you're buying, and make sure that it's right for you. Whether it's a commercial application, industrial, or residential, make sure you know what you're going to get.
- The biggest thing is direct sunlight. You need direct sunlight for it to be the most efficient. So, any kinda shading from trees is gonna hurt your return on investment in the long run. We have some sophisticated software that we use, and we basically just plug in the last year of your utility bill or electric bill, and then come out with an equation.
- And one of the other things is you need to make sure your house, your carbon footprint is as small as you can because we don't wanna sell you more panels than you need. So, if you replace windows, add attic insulation, you can reduce your carbon footprint, your utility bill, and buy less panels to generate your electricity. As soon as you turn that switch on, you're saving money. And the other thing to remember is, Steve, tell 'em about the federal tax rebate.
- There's still a 30% tax credit, federal tax credit good 'til 2022, and then it'll taper off to 22% and then down again. The total bill for the install, material, labor.
- It's fairly simplistic. At the end of the year, and you've acquired your bills for your solar installation, you need to talk with your tax accountant, but it's a fairly simple one-page form that you turn in.
I actually did it myself. Before we started selling solar publicly, I installed one of Sunbelt's first systems so, one, I could use the product we're selling, and then, two, go through the tax rebate, and it was very simple to get the money back. I did a $30,000 installation and roughly got $10,000 tax credit back. If you're retired, you've got less income, so you can carry it on for multiple years of your income tax to get the full tax credit.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported in May the all-items inflation index surged 8.6% over the past year, the highest increase since 1981.