The persistent myth about solar panels is that they are costly to install and maintain. That might be true as early as six years ago, but the average cost of this renewable energy source has plummeted in the last half-decade.
The decrease wasn’t due to the federal investment tax either as numbers tracked by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory of the US Department of Energy represented pre-incentive costs.
Cheaper to Go Solar Now
As it stands, the cost of investing in solar New Mexico is now 50% cheaper compared to five years ago.
But those are abstract numbers. To better appreciate how much you might invest if you go solar, you may incur about $19,000 for a 6-kilowatt solar system. But this will drop to just $13,000 if you apply for the solar tax credit.
Although 2019 is the last year you can take advantage of the 30% federal tax credit for solar power, New Mexico lawmakers are trying to adopt the Solar Tax Credit to incentivize homeowners into investing in renewable energy sources.
According to SB518, filed by Senator Mimi Stewart, you can claim 10% income tax credit for the solar panel you install in your home. You can request as much as $6,000 for the system.
Financing Options for Your Solar Panels
The good thing about investing in RE is that you never lack for financing options. That’s how aggressive the government and the industry are in promoting solar, wind, and hydropower, among others.
There are 3 paths you can take for financing assistance:
- You can pay cash – You can take out a loan from any of the lenders. You can use home equity for this. One advantage of this is that this could be tax-deductible. When you pay cash, you will keep all the incentives and local tax credits.
- Low-interest installment – Another way is to pay for the solar power in New Mexico on an installment basis. For Instance, the New Mexico Solar Group has a list of certified partner lenders that can lend you the amount at very low-interest rates. They also offer a zero down payment plan. The best thing is that the NM Solar Group will handle all the processing, so sit back and wait for your panels to be installed once your application is approved.
- Solar leasing – Under this system, you pay a fixed monthly rate during the duration of the lock-in period. The lock-in period will vary according to the terms of your lease. The one advantage is that you are not subjected to the fluctuation of energy costs from utility companies. And you will own your solar panel after the specified period.
Anyway, solar panels eventually pay for themselves in terms of the amount you save from your monthly electricity bills.
Besides, New Mexico has several incentives in place to encourage homeowners to go solar. One of these incentives is the buy-back program. The excess energy that you generate from your solar panel can be sold at $0.02 per kWh to El Paso Electric.
The state also doesn’t compute the solar roofs into your property taxes, unless you are selling your house. Another program is called net metering, which gives you extra credit if you send excess energy back to the grid.