The cost to install a solar system varies by geographic location, energy usage, available space for the array, and installer. Don’t write off the benefits of what an energy-efficient system, like the combination of solar and geothermal, could do for you. Investing in an energy-efficient system will not only bring you and generations to come benefits; but it will help create a more green, healthy environment while bringing cost savings and rewarding benefits. So, don’t hesitate to pair solar and geothermal heat pumps together.
Utilizing a geothermal heating, cooling, and hot water system can cut the energy use in a home or building by up to 70%; cuts hot water costs 25% – 40%; and cuts heating and cooling costs 30% – 70% annually. This helps you achieve a $0 monthly utility bill when combined with solar.
Another way to save money? Talk to your utility provider to see if net metering is available. Net metering allows you to send excess energy produced by your solar array back to the grid, crediting your account. This will make your meter run backwards. It also works in the instance that if your solar array isn't producing enough electricity, you can draw the needed energy from the excess energy you've banked up to cover the difference.
There is a 26% federal tax credit available for residential and commercial solar arrays (ground and roof mounts). As long as you own your solar energy system, you are eligible for the tax credit. You can “roll over” remaining credits into future years if you don’t have enough tax liability to claim the entire credit in one year.
There are also state tax incentives, as well as credits, referred to as SRECS (Solar Renewable Energy Certificates), that allow homeowners and commercial building owners to sell certificates (or credits) back to their utility based on the solar array production. Every 1000-kilowatt hours produced by the solar array, equals 1 SREC credit. These credits are then applied to the overall cost of the system.