There are many reasons why homeowners go solar, but improving the environment and cutting energy costs are the most common. Many people are aware that solar is a great home efficiency upgrade and are eager to reduce their carbon footprint while also improving property value. Whether your motivations for going solar are economic, environmental, or personal, this sizable list of solar power benfits will have something for everyone. Here are the top ten reasons why solar energy is good for your home and more popular than ever in the United States.
1. Drastically Reduce or Even Eliminate Your Electric Bills Whether you’re a homeowner, business, or nonprofit, electricity costs can make up a large portion of your monthly expenses. With a solar panel system, you’ll generate free power for your system’s entire 25+ year lifecycle. Even if you don’t produce 100 percent of the energy you consume, solar will reduce your utility bills and you’ll still save a lot of money. Learn more
2. Earn a Great Return on Your Investment Solar panels aren’t an expense – they’re one of the best ways to invest, with returns rivaling those of more traditional investments like stocks and bonds. Thanks to substantial electricity bill savings, the average American homeowner pays off their solar panel system in seven to eight years and sees an ROI of 20 percent or more. Learn more
3. Protect Against Rising Energy Costs One of the most clear cut benefits of solar panels is the ability to hedge utility prices. In the past ten years, residential electricity prices have gone up by an average of three percent annually. By investing in a solar energy system now, you can fix your electricity rate and protect against unpredictable increases in electricity costs. If you’re a business or homeowner with fluctuating cash flow, going solar also helps you better forecast and manage your expenses. Learn more
4. Increase Your Property Value Multiple studies have found that homes equipped with solar energy systems have higher property values and sell more quickly than non-solar homes. Appraisers are increasingly taking solar installations into consideration as they value homes at the time of a sale, and as homebuyers become more educated about solar, demand for properties equipped with solar panel systems will continue to grow. Learn more
5. Boost U.S. Energy Independence The sun is a near-infinite source of energy and a key component of achieving energy independence in the United States. By increasing our capacity to generate electricity from the sun, we can also insulate our country from price fluctuations in global energy markets. Learn more
6. Create Jobs and Help Your Local Economy According to The Solar Foundation, the solar industry adds jobs many times faster than the overall U.S. economy. This growth is expected to continue. Because solar-related jobs tend to be higher paying and cannot be outsourced, they are a significant contributor to the U.S. economy. Learn more
7. Protect the Environment Solar is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint. Buildings are responsible for 38 percent of all carbon emissions in the U.S., and going solar can significantly decrease that number. A typical residential solar panel system will eliminate three to four tons of carbon emissions each year—the equivalent of planting over 100 trees annually. Learn more
8. Demonstrate Your Commitment to Sustainability Sustainability is a social responsibility. There are many people who believe in preserving the world for generations to come, but don't know how to make an impact. Activism is one way, but the use of renewable energy, such as home solar panels is a guaranteed way to show your dedication and start conversations with friends, family, and neighbors.
9. Low Maintenance Solar panels are low maintenance. Because there are no moving parts, there’s nothing to wear out that will need replacing in the future. The average solar panel produced today has a life expectancy of 30 or more years.
10. Extends Roof Lifespan Solar panels also extend the life of a roof, because they protect from the elements, such as rain, snow and debris. They make the house more energy-efficient in the summer because the hot sun is not beating down on the roof directly—it is instead being absorbed by the panels, keeping the house temperature lower.