Did you know that the federal solar investment tax credit (ITC) is dropping from 26% to 22% in 2023? Or that the residential tax credit expires by 2024?

That’s enough reason to consider installing solar panels ASAP. The sooner you do, the sooner you can enjoy the benefits of solar power, such as lower bills and carbon footprint.

This guide details how to choose home solar systems, so read on to get the advice you need when making the switch.

Consider Your Average Electricity Consumption

If you have enough solar panels, they may generate the same amount of energy you usually use at home. That means your system is more likely to eliminate your electricity bills.

You must know how much electricity you consume to determine how many panels to get, though.

To give you an idea, know that the average US household used 10,715 kilowatt-hours (kWh) back in 2020. That’s about 893 kWh a month.

For a more accurate calculation, go through 12 of your previous statements. Then, sum up your monthly usage and divide it by 12 to get your monthly average.

Compare Electricity Usage With Panel Wattage

Wattage refers to a solar panel’s output rating, ranging from 250 to 400 watts. The higher the panel’s wattage rating, the more power it can generate. That also means you need fewer of them to supply your electricity needs.

You might want to buy high-wattage panels if you have limited roof space. The same goes if you live somewhere with minimal sunlight. Prepare a hefty solar system budget, though, as the higher a panel’s output rating, the costlier it is.

However, if you have lots of roof space, you can settle for less pricey panels with lower wattage ratings.

Look For Lengthy Warranties

Most solar system providers offer system warranties of up to 25 years, while a few offer 35 years.

A system warranty guarantees continued panel output up to a certain threshold. For example, let’s say your chosen provider gives you a 25-year warranty. In that case, it may assure you that your system can keep producing energy at an 80% efficiency by year 25.

Aside from a system warranty, be sure your panels come with a materials warranty, too. It provides coverage for components that suffer premature failure.

Factor in Financing Options

If you can’t shell out the cash to buy your system outright, you can finance its purchase. That provides you the assurance that you own your solar panels, as you have to pay the lender back. You want full ownership to qualify for the federal solar ITC and other incentives.

Fortunately, reliable solar companies offer low to no down payment solar financing programs. So, consider hiring one of them to ensure that you enjoy full ownership of the solar energy system.

Choose Home Solar Systems Like a Pro

There you have it, the most crucial facts you need to know so you can wisely choose home solar systems. Now you know that energy use, roof space, and available sunlight can help you decide on panel wattage. Don’t forget warranties, and if possible, buy or finance the panels to ensure ownership.

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