Sunlight is a valuable resource that will never be exhausted. Cognizant of that fact, human beings learned how to exploit it to provide sustainable source energy. This is done through solar power generation. Solar power is a renewable source of clean and affordable energy.
More and more American homes are embracing the use of solar energy. According to U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), solar power installations have grown from 1.2 GW to 30 GW in the last ten years. That is a tremendous growth rate. But what is pulling Americans towards residential solar energy? Below are five amazing benefits of solar energy for residential homes.
1. Solar energy lowers your annual energy costs
Unfortunately, the price of energy in America has been rising steadily in the recent past. On the other side, solar energy is free. You just need to meet the initial installation costs. The good news is that solar panels installation costs are going down. According to EERE, the cost of solar electric systems has decreased by more than 50 percent since 2010. Once you install the solar panels, you will cut your consumption of power from electricity companies significantly. In a way, you will also be contributing to the national power grid by reducing the amount the amount of power you siphon from it.
The supply and cost of non-renewable sources of energy such as coal and oil are unpredictable. For example, political instability can send the prices to the sky. With solar energy, you can predict your annual energy bills.
2. You will receive state and federal incentives for using solar energy
State and federal governments have appreciated the benefits of solar energy. With reports that oil reserves in the world are getting depleted, the authorities have acknowledged that the energy future of America depends on the adoption of sustainable energy solutions. That is why they provide incentives for people to use alternative sources of energy such as solar power.
Currently, there are more than 15 federal incentives programs for solar energy. For example, if you install or modify a solar electric system for residential use, you are eligible for a tax credit of up to 30 percent of the total qualified expenditures. The qualified expenditures include the labor costs incurred when installing a new system, wiring or piping to connect an existing system to a home, and on-site preparations. There are also numerous incentives under the Residential Energy Conservation Subsidy Exclusion.
3. Solar energy can increase the value of your home
When people are looking to sell their residential property, they make various modifications to increase the value. The changes include roof repair, making the kitchen more luxurious, or fitting steel doors.
Smart real estate developers have discovered that fitting a solar electric system also increases the value of residential property. Though the costs of modifying a kitchen and installing a solar electrical system might be close, when subsidies and tax credits are taken into account, solar systems have a better cost to value ratio. According to a study by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory(NREL), houses with solar panels sell almost 20 percent faster than those without. They also fetch a price that is 17 percent higher than houses without solar electrical systems.
4. You can use your solar electric system for many decades
Solar electric energy for a residential home is a long-term investment. The systems have a very low depreciation rate. Typically, with proper maintenance, solar panels depreciate at a rate of 0.5 percent annually. What does that imply? If you use your solar panels for 30 years, they will be about 85 percent as efficient as new panels. Furthermore, most solar panels have a warranty of more than 15 years.
5. Solar energy saves the environment and the world
Fossil fuels emit dangerous greenhouse gases. These gases reduce the quality of the air we breath, deplete the ozone layer, and cause global warming. If you install solar electric systems in your home, you will reduce the overdependence on fossil fuels. It will also increase your indoor air quality. In that way, you will have done your part in helping the world get rid of fossil fuels.
Back in the mines, extraction of fossil fuels pollutes land and water bodies. On the other side, solar energy is clean. It causes no harm to the environment.