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Solar Power Systems
Incentives for Switching to Solar Energy
by Gabby Hyman
 
While solar energy has been an alternative source of clean power for homes around the country for some time, new initiatives have sparked even greater support for the use of rooftop solar panels to power newly green homes. Not every state offers an incentive for solar installations, but many do, and so does the federal government. Now may be the right time for you to convert to photovoltaic panels and enjoy the energy efficiency of home solar power.
 
Last year, the federal government offered a maximum $2,000 tax credit to homeowners who installed solar electric systems before December 31, and taxpayers could claim upwards of 30 percent in tax credits for qualified solar equipment. A review of states shows that many offer tax incentives or refunds for switching to home solar power, and many counties and municipalities also are committed to reducing solar installation costs, exempting or reducing construction permit charges or other building fees.
 
States Offer Home Solar Power Incentives
California, for example, offers a property tax exemption up to 100 percent of a solar energy system value for qualified systems installed through 2013. It also provides financial incentives for installing photovoltaic panels.
 
In Eugene, Oregon, the municipal government pays residents for energy production from home solar systems that produce more kilowatts than residents use in a buy-back program up to $10,000. The State of Texas offers a property tax exemption of the appraised increase in property values generated by the installation of photovoltaics and other residential solar electric power systems.
 
The Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (http://www.dsireusa.org ) allows visitors to search incentives for any home solar installation.
 
Sources
DSIRE, Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency
Solar Home.org, Solar Tax Incentives by State
 
About the Author
Gabby Hyman has written articles and profiles for Yahoo, Microsoft Network, Microsoft Encarta, and other websites and print magazines around the world. He holds an MFA degree and has taught English abroad.

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