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Aztec Solar opposes proposed changes to net metering

Aztec Solar opposes proposed changes to net metering

Three California investor-owned utilities have proposed modifications to the state’s net metering legislation, including a monthly cost for solar system owners and a reduced credit for power returned to the grid.

San Diego Gas & Electric Company, Pacific Gas and Electric Company and Southern California Edison announced the concept earlier this year. They argued that it would fix problems in the current net energy metering scheme and build a contemporary, equitable distributed generating program.

The proposal’s key components are the termination of subsidies for new solar system adopters, the adoption of a net billing core tariff and a reduction in the credit that users receive for feeding excess power back to the grid. Monthly true-ups have also been introduced to replace yearly ones, allowing customers to carry over unused credits from month to month.

Customers who use net energy metering avoid paying customer service, policy mandates, generation and grid costs, which are passed on to nonsolar system owners via volumetric rates. Net energy metering users can avoid paying those fees using offsetting energy credits charged at a full retail value under the current net energy metering arrangement.

Aztec Solar is opposed to these regulations. According to the California Solar and Storage Association (CALSSA), the proposal would make solar an expensive choice for the majority of low- and middle-income users, putting the state’s economy on pause as a result of the pandemic.

According to CALSSA, a typical home user who wants solar power on their roof might pay $78 per month under the plan. In contrast, the connection fee for nonresidential systems, such as those built by these institutions, will be enormous.


What Is Net Metering and How Does It Work?

Solar energy system owners get credited for the electricity they provide to the grid through net metering. A photovoltaic system on a residential customer’s roof may create more power than the residence consumes during daytime hours. If the home is net metered, the electricity meter will run backward to offer a credit against the amount of power used at night or during other times when the home’s electricity consumption exceeds the system’s output.

Switching to solar may earn you money, believe it or not. When you sign up for Net Energy Metering, you’re selling the power company your unused energy. Your meter may begin to turn backward if you are not consuming as much electricity as your solar panels provide.

This is why Aztec Solar supports net metering.

Contact us today if you have any questions or are ready to get started on your solar project!

How Much Will You Get Back From the Federal Solar Tax Credit?

How Much Will You Get Back From the Federal Solar Tax Credit?

The upfront cost can be one of the most significant barriers to solar implementation. However, incentives like the Federal Solar Tax Credit can save you hundreds of dollars on your first investment.

Let’s break down how much you can save with it.


The Solar Tax Credit: What Is It and How Does It Work?

The solar tax incentive is a refundable credit you can claim on your yearly tax return. This tax credit is based on a percentage of the cost of installing a home solar photovoltaic (PV) system, rather than a fixed monetary sum. Currently, the tax credit is worth 26% of your entire system cost.

If you don’t have any tax credits, they can assist you to lower the amount of money you owe on your income tax returns.

A solar tax credit is available to every homeowner who installs a solar system on their home in the United States. It isn’t required that it be your primary property.

During the tax year, the system must be operational. As a result, if you install and start using a domestic solar system in 2021, you’ll be able to claim the credit on your 2021 tax return.

The credit is now being phased out, meaning its value is progressively declining. If Congress does not extend the credit, it will be phased out entirely.


What Is Included in the Tax Credit?

The federal solar tax credit now pays 26% of the following expenditures for homeowners who install and start utilizing a solar PV system.

  • Solar panel installation labor expenses, including fees for permits and inspections.
  • Solar batteries, which are energy storage systems solely fueled by solar panels.
  • Inverters, wiring and mounting hardware are all included in the price of the solar system.

Do You Qualify for the Tax Credit?

When filing your 2021 taxes, you must fulfill the following conditions to claim the federal solar tax credit and get money back on your solar investment:

  • Your system must be installed in either your permanent or temporary residence.
  • The solar system must be brand new or have never been used previously. This credit may only be used once for your solar PV system’s “initial installation.”
  • Your solar PV system must have been installed and functioning no later than Dec. 31, 2021.
  • The solar PV system must be yours. If you lease your system, you will not be eligible for the tax credit.

How to Claim the Solar Tax Credit

Filling out IRS Form 5695 and submitting it with your annual tax return is all it takes to claim the federal solar tax credit. This form is available for download directly from the IRS. If you employ a tax preparation service or a tax expert, they can help you fill out this form.


Your Local Solar Company

​​For decades, Aztec Solar has been installing solar energy systems throughout Northern California. Our clients would never consider powering their homes in any other way after converting to solar.

Not only will our team of experts give exceptional customer service, they will also be able to decide which options are best suited to your needs.

Get in touch with us today!

Solar and storage mandate proposed for new commercial and residential buildings in California

Solar and storage mandate proposed for new commercial and residential buildings in California

The California Energy Commission (CEC) has approved the 2022 Building Energy Efficiency Standards for new and refurbished structures, which will help the state meet its public health, climate and sustainable energy goals. As a result, new California buildings must be fitted with solar and energy storage, according to the guidelines.

This vote follows California’s historic decision in 2019 to require solar panels in almost all new homes built in the state. In addition, the 2022 regulation requires new California homes to be energy storage ready.

The new standards would take effect on Jan. 1, 2023, provided the California Building Standards Commission upholds the CEC vote in December.

This proposal would improve existing California legislation that mandates solar electricity to be installed in new single-family houses and multifamily structures up to three stories tall.

The commission stated that the project’s construction expenses would be modest because it is more cost-efficient to add solar and storage at the time of building rather than retrofitting.

Houses and buildings consume more than half of California’s electricity and produce a quarter of the greenhouse gas emissions. The commission estimates that the reduced emissions would be equivalent to removing 2.2 million automobiles from the road over the next 30 years.

Aztec Solar and Sigora Solar applaud the decision.


Solar energy

The sun provides more than simply light during the day; each photon of sunlight that reaches Earth includes energy that powers our globe. Different energy sources rely on solar energy, including our weather systems. Enough solar radiation that reaches the planet’s surface every hour could theoretically provide our global energy demands for nearly a year.

Solar and solar battery storage has several advantages, including decreased power bills. There are a few additional conveniences and benefits to be had. Some individuals just enjoy the concept of being more environmentally conscious and self-sufficient in terms of energy. They value the fact that their energy requirements are less reliant on the grid.

The opportunity to install solar panels is a selling factor, and the additional cost to property purchasers will be offset by decreased energy costs.

California’s already burgeoning solar sector is likely to benefit from the new mandate. The state constructs 80,000 new residences every year on average, 15,000 of which have solar panels installed. The new mandate may result in a 44% increase in yearly solar installations at the present home construction rate.

The California Energy Commission and the Department of Energy are pursuing solar power programs to help the country meet 80% of its energy demands with renewables, ensuring the environment’s preservation for future generations.

Join the solar revolution today. If you wish to help the environment and save on your Sacramento area energy bill by going solar, contact us today.

What You Should Know About the Federal Solar Tax Credit

What You Should Know About the Federal Solar Tax Credit

More people opt for solar energy systems and other renewable energy sources to lessen their dependence on fossil fuels, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save money on their electric bills.

Solar panels also will improve the value of your property.

While there are several long-term advantages to adopting solar, the initial expenses might be prohibitive. You might qualify for a solar tax credit to help cover part of the costs.


What does the federal solar tax credit entail and how does it operate?

Businesses and homeowners can claim the federal solar investment tax credit when installing a new solar photovoltaic system. The solar investment tax credit (ITC) is currently only valid for installations completed before Dec. 31, 2023.

This credit is available for first and second houses as well as other capital upgrades.

The solar tax credit is nonrefundable, which means you won’t get a refund if your tax burden is more than the credit, but you can rollover any unused credit into the next tax year.

Tax credits vs. deductions

Tax credits provide you a dollar-for-dollar decrease in your tax liability. On the other hand, tax deductions reduce your taxable income, lowering your tax bill.


Solar tax credit’s worth

The value of your solar energy credit is determined by the year your system was installed. Homeowners can get a federal tax credit worth up to 26% of eligible expenditures if they install a system in 2021 or 2022.

The existing solar panel and system installation tax incentive will run out at the end of 2023. If Congress does not renew the federal investment tax credit as it has in the past, installing a system after 2023 will not qualify for it.

If you’re thinking of building a solar photovoltaic (PV) system, do so as soon as possible.


Getting a federal solar tax credit

To qualify for a federal solar tax credit, you must fulfill specific qualifying conditions, although they are very flexible. They are as follows:

  • The system is set up in either your permanent or vacation home.
  • The equipment has not been used before.
  • The deadline for installing a solar PV system is Dec. 31, 2023.
  • You own the system and paid cash or borrowed money to buy it.

Vacation houses may only be eligible for a partial credit based on how much time you spend there. For instance, if you stay at the property for six months, you can claim 50% of your entire credit.

Solar panel tax credits are not available for rental homes, although they may be eligible for a comparable business credit if the property is used as a dwelling.


What is the procedure for claiming the solar tax credit?

When you fill out the IRS Form 5695 for home energy credits, you can claim the federal solar tax credit. This form is filled out using your federal income tax return and either Form 1040NR or Form 1040.

The following is a step-by-step guide to claiming solar credit:

  1. Calculate the overall system cost, including qualifying equipment, contractor labor and permit fees, among other things.
  2. Determine if you want to live in the house full time or part time. Secondary residences may only be eligible for a partial credit based on the number of weeks you spend there.
  3. Refunds and state tax credits should be factored into your calculations. Utility energy rebates and state tax credits may diminish the federal tax credit.
  4. Tax credits that are not refundable should be claimed. Other federal tax credits will have an impact on whether you get a carryover energy credit for the next year.

Your entire energy credit is shown on Schedule 3 of your Form 1040. In addition, you may claim an appropriate solar tax credit with the help of a tax professional or online tax software.

If you have any questions, or are ready to get started with your solar project, contact us today!

Extend Your Swimming Season Into Fall With Solar Pool Heating

Extend Your Swimming Season Into Fall With Solar Pool Heating

Because the water is too cold, the typical pool owner only uses their pool for three to four months every year. A solar heater may prolong your swimming season by a few months, allowing you to spend more time in your pool. Between April and October, a solar heating system can readily heat a pool to temperatures of 78 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. As we enter August, it is only a matter of time before we start thinking about fall. So, let’s take a look at how solar pool heating works.


What is the process of using solar pool heaters?

Pool water will flow out of the pool and into a solar thermal collector where it is heated by the sun before being returned to the pool. You’ll need a control valve, a check valve and a gauge to keep the pool temperature consistent.

Most systems can detect the water’s temperature and send it to a solar collector to be warmed before reverting it to the pool. The flow control valve returns the water to the pool when the water in the solar collector reaches the specified temperature.

The solar collector is generally larger in colder regions of the U.S. and in locations where the pool is utilized year-round, allowing it to maintain heating the pool even when the temperature drops significantly.

If necessary, a solar water heater can be used in conjunction with gas or electric heaters.

Reduce the Cost of Heating Your Pool

Solar pool heating lowers your operating expenses significantly, allowing you to allocate more money elsewhere. A solar pool heater is significantly cheaper throughout its lifespan than a natural gas heater, and it is the greatest method to level your energy costs.

Rebate and Incentives for Solar Pools

Commercial solar subsidies are now available in the different gas service regions. They can cut the payback time down to only 1-2 years. The California Public Utilities Commission created the incentive program to minimize the amount of greenhouse gases produced by heating public and semi-public pools with conventional fuels.

Select a Professional Solar Contractor

Aztec Solar has been installing solar pool heating systems in Northern California for decades. After switching to solar, our clients would never contemplate heating their hot tubs or pools any other way.

Our team of specialists will not only provide excellent customer service, but they will also have the knowledge to determine which alternatives are most suited to your needs.

Contact us today!

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