Solar Photovoltaics

Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit

Tax credits for residential energy efficiency have now expired.  The tax credit for builders of energy efficient homes and tax deductions for energy efficient commercial buildings have also expired.

The tax credits for residential renewable energy products are still available through December 31, 2021. Renewable energy tax credits for fuel cells, small wind turbines, and geothermal heat pumps now feature a gradual step down in the credit value, the same as those for solar energy systems.

While the tax credits for residential energy efficiency have expired, you can still save money and energy in your home by using ENERGY STAR

Energy-Efficient Mortgages

Homeowners can take advantage of energy efficient mortgages (EEM) to either finance energy efficiency improvements to existing homes, including renewable energy technologies, or to increase their home buying power with the purchase of a new energy efficient home. The U.S. federal government supports these loans by insuring them through Federal Housing Authority (FHA) or Veterans Affairs (VA) programs. This allows borrowers who might otherwise be denied loans to pursue energy efficiency, and it secures lenders against loan default.

FHA Energy Efficient Mortgages
The FHA allows lenders to add up to 100% of energy efficiency improvements to an existing mortgage loan

Renewable Electricity Production Tax Credit (PTC)

Under the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, the renewable energy tax credits for fuel cells, small wind turbines, and geothermal heat pumps now feature a gradual step down in the credit value, the same as those for solar energy systems

Tax Credit: 

  • 30% for systems placed in service by 12/31/2019
  • 26% for systems placed in service after 12/31/2019 and before 01/01/2021
  • 22% for systems placed in service after 12/31/2020 and before 01/01/2022

Expires:  December 31, 2021

Details:  Existing homes and new construction qualify.  Both principal residences and second homes qualify. Rentals do not qualify. 

Sales and Use Tax Exemption for Electric Power Generation and Storage Equipment

AB 389 of 2017 created an exemption from the sales and use tax for "qualified tangible personal property purchased for use by a qualified person to be used primarily in the generation or production, or storage and distribution, of electric power." The exemption also applies to contractors who purchase the equipment in the service of a contract with a qualified person. "Qualified person" is defined in the statutes. 

The exemption does not apply to the generation or production of electricity from nuclear energy, large hydro, or fossil fuels, except when used in cogeneration. However, the exemption does apply to the

Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target (SMART) Program

The Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target (SMART) Program provides per-kWh incentives to solar PV projects up to 5 MW. The program is capped at an aggregate of 1,600 MW, and incentives are available in Eversource, National Grid, and Unitil territories. 

Between 20% and 35% of total program capacity is required to be reserved for projects of 25 kW or less. Program capacity is divided into 80 MW blocks, with incentive amounts declining with each block.

Incentive Amount

The value of the incentive payment is equal to the following for standalone solar projects: 

(Base compensation rate + compensation rate adders - greenfield

Austin Energy - Multifamily Solar PV Rebate Program

Note: Additional rebates are available through August 31

Austin Energy offers incentives for multifamily property owners to install solar PV systems on five or more units. In order to qualify, PV systems must be at least 2kW (AC) per unit or be estimated to produce at least 50% of annual electrical consumption. For more information, visit the program website.

City of Aspen - Commercial Energy Efficiency Rebate Program

The City of Aspen offers a variety of incentives to its commercial customers to encourage the use of energy efficient products. Rebates are available for water heaters, low flow fixtures, toilets, solar photovoltaics, geothermal heat pumps, and custom projects.

For water efficiency rebates, contact the City of Aspen Climate Action Office at climate@cityofaspen.com or 970-920-5039.

For custom rebates, schedule a custom rebate consultation by calling at 970-925-9775.

For more information on any of these programs, visit the program website.