Florida Solar Rebates And Incentives

Rebates list

Florida Renewable Energy Incentives Summary

Florida

Florida, the Sunshine State, has tremendous solar potential. But, so far, the state isn’t living up to that potential. While Florida has the third best physical and geographic conditions in the country for solar, it’s policies hold it down at 17th for installed solar capacity.

Florida does not have a renewable energy portfolio standard, which drives utility investment in other states. Additionally, state policy prohibits third-party owned systems. That means the solar leasing and power purchase agreements that have made solar boom among homeowners who can’t afford to buy solar systems outright in other states aren’t contributing to industry growth in Florida.

However, Florida does offer some solar power financial incentives. Florida Power and Light offers a solar rebate and all of the utilities governed by the state utilities commission offer net metering. Under the law they must credit customers for net excess generation in a month. If, over a 12-month period, they generate more power than they use, the utility must pay them.

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Beaches Energy Services - Residential Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

Summary

Beaches Energy Services offers rebates to residential customers as an incentive to install qualifying energy-efficient equipment and measures in existing homes. New construction does not qualify for any of the rebates. Rebates are available for air conditioners, heat pumps, programmable thermostats, window film/solar screens, heat pump water heaters and ceiling insulation upgrades.. Equipment must meet certain energy efficiency standards listed on the program web site. The rebate applications can be downloaded from the program web site, and applications must be submitted within 60 days or

Broward County - Rooftop Solar System Permit Standard

Summary

This ordinance is intended to promote the health, safety, and general welfare of the citizens by removing barriers to the installation of alternative energy systems and encourage the installation of rooftop photovoltaic solar systems.

There are no standards or guidelines within the code of ordinances that can prohibit the installation of rooftop solar systems as accessory equipment on residential or commercial buildings.

The height of the rooftop photovoltaic solar systems cannot be higher than the roofline (top of the roof). For flat roofs, the system cannot be greater than five (5) feet above

Broward County Online Solar Permitting

Summary

Broward County now offers Go SOLAR Online Permitting*, for rooftop solar photovoltaic system permitting. This online permitting system may be used for residential or low commercial properties that are governed by a participating municipality.

The online permitting system is designed to provide a one-stop solar permitting process with a single application form, electronic review and approval, and flat fee. Applicants can use this system to choose from pre-approved and pre-engineered solar panel mounting installation designs, and then apply for permits using those designs. Applicants must apply

Building Energy Code

Summary

Much of the information presented in this summary is drawn from the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Building Energy Codes Program and the Building Codes Assistance Project (BCAP). For more detailed information about building energy codes, visit the DOE and BCAP websites.

The Florida Building Commission (FBC) is directed to adopt, revise, update, and maintain the Florida Building Code in accordance with Chapter 120 of the state statutes. The code is mandatory throughout the state and need not be adopted by a local government to be applicable at the local level. An online copy of the

City of Jacksonville - Downtown Rooftop Regulations

Summary

Solar collectors may extend up to seven feet above the maximum height limit with unlimited roof coverage. Solar collectors may extend up to 15 feet above the maximum height limit, as long as the coverage does not exceed 20 percent of the roof area, or 25 percent if the total includes stair or elevator penthouses or screened mechanical equipment.

City of Lauderhill - Revolving Loan Program

Summary

The City of Lauderhill offers insterst free loans for EnergyStar appliances through a municipal revolving loan program. Loans from $400 to $2,000 are available to homeowners purchasing new Energy Star certified appliances from eligible retailers. Tankless water heaters, solar photovoltaic systems and solar water heating systems are also eligible for the loan program. Loan funds must be repaid within a two year period. Eligibility will be determined within 10 business days.

Loan funds are made payable directly to the retailer within a week of the time the final loan documents are signed. A

City of Longwood - Raising Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

Summary

The City of Longwood offers the Raising Energy Efficiency Program (REEP) to owner occupied residences within the City of Longwood for making energy efficiency improvements to their properties while supporting local businesses. 

In order to qualify, applicants must utilize contractors, suppliers or other businesses located in the City of Longwood to make their improvements eligible for the rebate program. Rebate amounts vary based upon efficiency upgrade with a maximum rebate amount of $500 a year per household. A full list of eligible improvements and application instructions can be found on

City of Miami - Green Building Density Bonus

Summary

Allows bonus building capacity within the urban core zone for LEED certified Silver, Gold or Platinum Buildings. The capacities for Buildings certified by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) is as follows:


Silver: For Buildings under 50,000 sf, 2.0% of the floor lot ratio (FLR)

Gold: 4.0% of the floor lot ratio (FLR)

Platinum: 13.0% of the floor lot ratio (FLR)

Standards equivalent to the USGBC may alternatively apply.

City of Tallahassee Utilities - Energy Star Certified New Homes Rebate Program

Summary

The City of Tallahassee Utilities offers a rebate of $1 per square foot (up to $2,000) for ENERGY STAR qualified new homes. Qualifying housing types include single-family detached, single-family attached, low-rise multifamily, and existing-home renovations. To earn the ENERGY STAR, a home must meet guidelines for energy efficiency set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Homes must be at least 15% more energy efficient than home built to the current Internation Energy Conservation Code (with Florida modifications), and include additional energy-saving features that typically make them

City of Winter Park Energy Conservation Rebate Program

Summary

The City of Winter Park is now offering rebates to Winter Park electric residential and commercial customers for implementing energy conservation measures.

Residential customers can qualify for rebates on duct repair, attic insulation upgrades, heat pump replacements, energy efficient windows, wall insulation upgrades, reflective roofing installation and solar water heaters. Commercial customers can qualify for rebates on building envelope improvements, HVAC equipment (or system related) improvements, indoor lighting improvements and industrial energy improvements.

New construction and

Energy Conservation in Public Buildings

Summary
The Florida Energy Conservation and Sustainable Buildings Act requires the use of energy-efficient equipment and design, and solar energy devices for heating and cooling state buildings where life-cycle cost analysis determines that solar-energy systems will be cost-effective over the life of the building. Florida law also requires that all new educational facilities include passive solar design. Florida mandates that schools with hot water demands exceeding 1,000 gallons per day must include a solar water heating system that provides at least 65% of hot water needs whenever economically

Gulf Power - Residential Energy Efficiency Programs

Summary

EarthCents

Gulf Power, owned by Southern Company, offers programs to make customers' homes more energy efficient through do-it-yourself or professionally installed efficiency measures.  First, the utility conducts a free analysis of the home's energy efficiency and identifies ways to use less energy and save money.  Contact the utility for assistance with online or at-home check-ups.   For those building a new home, Gulf Power provides a free pre-construction analysis that includes heating and cooling system sizing and building envelope recommendations.  Gulf Power also provides eligible homes

Hillsborough County - Solar and Wind Standards

Summary

The Land Development Code for Hillsborough County outlines the appropriate uses and guidelines for the operation of a solar energy production facility and a wind energy conversion system (WECS).

For a solar facility in an agricultural zone, the proposed lot size shall be a minimum of five (5) acres. There should be a setback of 50 feet from all boundaries of the site. The solar panels should be ground mounted and have a maximum height of 15 feet.

Ground-mounted facilities must be enclosed with a fence. On-site power lines and interconnections shall be placed underground. Facilities will be

Interconnection Standards

Summary

In March 2008, the Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) adopted interconnection rules for renewable-energy systems up to two megawatts (MW) in capacity. The PSC rules apply only to the state's investor-owned utilities; the rules do not apply to electric cooperatives or municipal utilities.

Florida's interconnection rules include provisions for three tiers of renewable-energy systems:

  • Tier 1: 10 kilowatts (kW) or less
  • Tier 2: Larger than 10 kW, but not larger than 100 kW
  • Tier 3: Larger than 100 kW, but not larger than 2 MW

To qualify for expedited interconnection under the

JEA - Clean Power Program

Summary

In November 1999, JEA, a municipal utility, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Sierra Club and the American Lung Association of Florida to formalize the municipal utility's commitment to generate at least 7.5% of its electric capacity from green energy sources by 2015. Eligible renewable-energy resources include solar, biomass, biogas (methane from landfills and sewage treatment plants), and wind, as well as specific efficiency projects (which are located at JEA facilities where improvements made result in additional power output with no additional fuel input).


Local Option - Special Districts

Summary

Note: In 2010, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), which has authority over mortgage underwriters Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, directed these enterprises against purchasing mortgages of homes with a PACE lien due to its senior status above a mortgage. Most residential PACE activity subsided following this directive; however, some residential PACE programs are now operating with loan loss reserve funds, appropriate disclosures, or other protections meant to address FHFA's concerns. Commercial PACE programs were not directly affected by FHFA’s actions, as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac do not

Miami-Dade County - Expedited Green Buildings Process

Summary

In an effort to promote environmentally sensitive design and construction, the Miami-Dade County Commissioners passed an ordinance in June 2005 to expedite the permitting process for “green” buildings certified by a recognized environmental rating agency. Commercial, industrial, and residential projects are all eligible as long as they are located in unincorporated Miami-Dade County and the City of West Miami. Additionally, solar water heating and solar photovoltaic projects are included in the "fast track" for permitting review.

See the Miami-Dade County Building Department web site for

Miami-Dade County - Green Corridor Property Assessed Clean Energy District

Summary

Note: In 2010, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), which has authority over mortgage underwriters Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, directed these enterprises against purchasing mortgages of homes with a PACE lien due to its senior status above a mortgage. Most residential PACE activity subsided following this directive; however, some residential PACE programs are now operating with loan loss reserve funds, appropriate disclosures, or other protections meant to address FHFA's concerns. Commercial PACE programs were not directly affected by FHFA’s actions, as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac do not

Miami-Dade County - Solar System Permitting

Summary

Miami-Dade County outlines its guidelines for rooftop solar systems in its application. This document highlights that Miami-Dade County is in a high velocity hurricane zone (HVHZ) and may require specific steps to be followed in order to gain a solar system permit.

A roof plan including the solar system is necessary for the application. The system can either be photovoltaic or solar thermal. Along with the roof plan, structural drawings and electrical diagrams are needed for the completion of the application. More information can be found in the application and the electronic solar permit form.

Miami-Dade County - Targeted Jobs Incentive Fund

Summary

The Targeted Jobs Incentive Fund (TJIF) provides financial incentives for select industries, including solar thermal and photovoltaic manufacturing, installation and repair companies that are relocating or expanding within Miami-Dade County. The program is administered by the Beacon Council.  To be eligible, new or expanding companies relocating to Miami-Dade County must create at least 10 new jobs with salaries equal to or exceeding 100% of the state annual average wage, and make a capital improvement of at least $3 million.

Qualifying industries include:

  • Advanced Manufacturing
  • Aviation

Net Metering

Summary
The Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) adopted rules for net metering and interconnection for renewable-energy systems up to 2 MW in capacity for investor owned utilities and also requires municipal utilities and electric cooperatives to offer net metering without stipulating standards. Net metering is available to customers who generate electricity using solar energy, geothermal energy, wind energy, biomass energy, ocean energy, hydrogen, waste heat or hydroelectric power.
Utilities must file annual reports with the Florida PSC indicating the number of customer-generators and the

Ocala Utility Services - Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

Summary

Ocala Utility Services Electric and Telecommunications is a community owned utility that serves around 50,000 customers in Ocala and Marion County area. Ocala Utility Services offers rebates on A/C and heat pumps, refrigerators and freezers, dishwashers, clothes washers, and insulation.

 Commercial customers are only eligible for insulation and lighting rebates. Ocala also has a rebate program for solar water heaters, more information can be found here. For more information on these rebates and for downloadable rebate forms please go to the website above.

Orlando Utilities Commission - Residential Solar Loan Program

Summary

Orlando Utilities Commission (OUC), in cooperation with the Orlando Federal Credit Union (OFCU), provides its customers with low-interest loans for solar photovoltaic (PV) systems and solar water heating (SWH) systems. Customers may borrow up to $7,500 for a SWH system or up to $20,000 for a PV system, and loans are repaid over time as fixed payments on customers' monthly utility bills. Interest rates for SWH systems vary from 0% to 4% over a term ranging from three years to seven years. Interest rates for PV systems vary from 2% to 5.5% over a term ranging from three years to 10 years.

Orlando Utilities Commission - Residential Solar Water Heater Rebate Program

Summary

The Orlando Utilities Commission (OUC) offers residential electric customers a point-of-sale rebate of $1,000 for new solar water heating systems.

Through a partnership with the Orlando Federal Credit Union (OFCU), OUC also offers a Residential Solar Loan Program to finance the solar hot water system. Customers who choose to finance through this special program receive a point-of-sale rebate of $550 in addition to OUC’s interest rate buydown on the loan. All participants must have their systems installed by a licensed contractor and have a permit approved.

Solar pool heating systems are

Property Tax Abatement for Renewable Energy Property

Summary

Florida provides a 100% property tax exemption for residential renewable energy property and an 80% property tax abatement for non-residential renewable energy property. 

Eligible renewable energy property includes solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, solar PV plus storage systems, wind energy systems, solar water heaters, and geothermal heat pumps installed on or after January 1, 2013. For the purpose of assessing property taxes for a home, an increase in the just value of the property attributable to the installation of this equipment should be ignored. The exemption applies to the following

Renewable Energy Easements & Rights Laws

Summary

Florida law forbids ordinances, deed restrictions, covenants, declarations or similar binding agreements from prohibiting the use of solar collectors (including clothes lines) or "other energy devices based on renewable resources," although certain restrictions related to visibility may be imposed on property owners, as long as the effective operation of the system does not suffer as a result. Community associations are specifically prohibited from preventing the installation of solar collectors on residential rooftops. Legislation that took effect in July 2008 (HB 697) extended the

Renewable Energy Production Tax Credit

Summary

In June 2006, S.B. 888 established a renewable energy production tax credit to encourage the development and expansion of renewable energy facilities in Florida. The credit was allowed to expire in 2010. In April 2012, H.B. 7117 re-established and updated the renewable energy production tax credit. This summary describes the current version of the credit.

This annual corporate tax credit is equal to $0.01 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electricity produced and sold by the taxpayer to an unrelated party during a given tax year. For new facilities (placed in service after May 1, 2012) the credit is

Solar and CHP Sales Tax Exemption

Summary

Solar energy systems have been exempt from Florida's sales and use tax since July 1, 1997. The term "solar energy system" means the equipment and requisite hardware that provide and are used for collecting, transferring, converting, storing or using incidental solar energy for water heating, space heating and cooling, or other applications that would otherwise require the use of a conventional source of energy such as petroleum products, natural gas, manufactured gas or electricity.

This exemption was originally set to expire July 1, 2002, but it was extended for three more three years. In

Solar Contractor Licensing

Summary

Until 1994, Florida offered limited specialty licenses for residential solar hot water and pool heating, as well a general solar contractor's license. These specialty licenses have not been issued since that time, although people holding these licenses may renew them.

The new solar contractor license defines a broader scope of work. With the new license, solar contractors have the authority to install, maintain and repair solar hot water systems, solar pool heating systems and photovoltaic systems in residential, commercial and industrial facilities for compensation. To qualify for a license,

Solar Equipment Certification

Summary

Under the Solar Energy Standards Act of 1976, the Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC) is responsible for certifying all solar equipment sold in Florida, unless the equipment has been otherwise certified by a licensed engineer to meet the standards in Florida's most recent building code. 

A manufacturer who wishes to have their solar equipment certified first contacts FSEC for an application and requests that FSEC test samples of the product at random. Equipment is then subjected to a series of tests in order to be approved or denied certification. Standards and applications procedures for