Low Income Solar Programs 3

How to Find Low Income Solar Programs That Work For Your Family

Low income solar programs are actually a lot more common than you may think. Whether it’s rebate incentives for solar panels, or switching to get your energy from a community solar farm, there are great options get clean, affordable solar energy, even if you can’t buy outright panels.

Going solar isn’t always the easiest. Yes, it’ll save you tons of money (and help the environment) in the long run, but it takes a huge initial investment to even get started. The average cost of solar installation lands somewhere between $17,538 and $23,458. Unsurprisingly, that amount of money isn’t easy to come by for many families around the United States. 

Unfortunately, the cost of entry does put a damper on many families’ abilities to benefit from solar power, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. There are plenty of incentives and programs available to help control the cost of solar, allowing more people to enjoy life on clean, renewable energy — even if your household doesn’t earn much money. Here’s how to find the best low-income solar programs that work for your family.

What’s a low-income solar program?

There are plenty of incentives designed to make solar affordable for middle-income households, but even those aren’t always enough to make solar affordable for everyone. 

Low-income solar programs are exclusive incentives and discounts designed to help families and households that qualify as “low income” afford the cost of going solar. It brings down the cost to make solar affordable on almost any budget.

While low-income solar programs won’t make solar panels 100% free, they will provide significant discounts and payment programs to help families with lower incomes afford the cost. 

For example, the state of Hawaii offers an on-bill repayment program that provides low-interest loans to low-income families to pay for solar panels. Instead of making regular loan payments, the loan is paid back with the excess energy the home generates. 

Many states also provide Community Solar programs, where you can simply switch your energy to come from a local solar farm, and bypass having to deal with panels at all.

And want to know the best part? It’s free to switch and it saves you 10-15% on your bills!

What qualifies as “low income”?

Most low-income solar programs define low-income as a household that earns below the federally defined threshold, which is typically at or below 80% of the area median income (AMI). 

In other words, if you earn less than 80% of the median (middle) income in your area, you would likely qualify for low-income solar programs. However, each state has different programs. Make sure you do your research to find which low-income solar programs are available in your area.

Where to find low-income solar programs

The easiest way to find low-income solar programs is to use an online database like DSIRE.

DSIRE stands for Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency. It was created by the NC Clean Energy Technology Center to be the most comprehensive source for everything and anything solar incentive, including low-income incentives. 

Just visit their website, click on your state, and you can browse through all the solar incentives in your area. 

The only downside to DSIRE (which can also be considered an upside) is that it shows ALL the solar incentives in your area, not just low-income solar programs. Depending on your state, you might have to search through a decently large list of incentives to find one that works for you. 

Once you find a program that fits your family’s needs and budget, simply click the link, go the program website, and apply. It’s as simple as that!

Most states also maintain their own databases of renewable incentives and low-income solar programs. With a quick visit to Google — or your search engine of choice — you can easily find your state’s list of solar incentives. 

State databases are also helpful because you can usually apply for programs and incentives right from the website for an easy one-stop-shop.

Consider affordable solar alternatives

Even with low-income solar programs available, not every home or property is suitable for solar installation. If you’re a renter or live in a home that’s not considered “solar ready,” it doesn’t matter what the price is; solar panels just won’t work for your property. But that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy clean, affordable, renewable energy!

There are plenty of affordable solar alternatives that work for people of any income level or living situation. One of the most common is community solar. 

Community solar is when people within a utility area contribute to operate and maintain an off-site solar farm in a suitable location. When the solar farm generates energy, it sends it back to the grid, reducing the subscribers’ energy bills. 

Community solar is a great way for low-income families to enjoy clean, renewable energy without the massive upfront costs of a solar installation. Plus, it’ll help you save on your energy bills, keeping more money in your pocket every month!

Find the right solar option for your budget and needs

The words “solar” and “affordable” don’t always seem to fit together. The cost of a solar installation is easily into the tens of thousands of dollars, making solar seem out of reach for many families. 

Luckily, there are plenty of low-income solar programs that can greatly reduce the cost of going solar. Use the DSIRE database to search for solar programs in your area or consider an affordable solar alternative like community solar.

With community solar, you can enjoy clean, renewable energy without the huge up-front cost or or liability of owning panels on your home. For a small monthly subscription, you can get local solar energy sent straight to your home, and you’ll pay on average 10% less on your utility bills, all while helping the planet.

If you’re interested in going solar or joining a community solar project near you, find out what the best option is for your location and see how much you can save!

No matter which option you choose, going solar is more affordable than you might think!

Similar Posts