In August 2008, North Carolina enacted legislation that exempts 80% of the appraised value of a "solar energy electric system" (also known as a photovoltaic, or PV, system) from property tax. For the purposes of this assessment, the term "solar energy electric system" means "all equipment used directly and exclusively for the conversion of solar energy to electricity." This incentive is effective for taxable years beginning on or after July 1, 2008.
A Memorandum sent to County Commissioners in February 2011 clarified that residential PV systems that are not used to generate income or in connection with a business may be entirely exempt from property taxes as non-business personal property. The Memorandum provides further guidance for determining if a system can be exempted as non-business personal property. System owners should review the Memorandum and consult their local property assessment office if they have questions.