Requirements for Installing Residential Solar
While the cost of solar is worth considering, if the home doesn't qualify for solar, it doesn't matter. To qualify for solar, homeowners must meet several requirements.
First and foremost, the individual applying for solar needs to be the homeowner. Or the renter has to work with the homeowner to have solar installed.
Owning the home, however, isn't the only thing needed. Homes also need a certain amount of non-shaded space and financing figured out.
Space Required for Solar
A typical residential solar panel requires 65 inches by 39 inches, which means the average solar panel needs about 15 square feet per panel. The amount of solar panels needed depends on the usage of the home, which is another qualifying factor for solar.
Home Usage Needed to Qualify
Each solar company has a certain threshold, which is determined by the profit it will give the company, and the savings it offers the customer. Go Solar Group's minimum usage requirement is 6,000 kWh per year, which equals an average of 500 kWh per month.
Homes that don't use enough energy don't save as much with solar. However, if a homeowner is planning on adding energy-consuming upgrades, solar is a good way to decrease the cost of running them.
The Impact of Shade on Solar Panels
Shaded roofs are useless to solar panels. Solar panels need sunlight to produce electricity and do best in full sun, which means homes shaded by trees either need the trees trimmed or the homeowner needs to consider a ground mount.
The type of financing determines savings and whether a credit score is important. Financing is also determined by whether the homeowner qualifies for the Federal Tax Credit (ITC).
Credit tells lenders whether the person they are investing in is a safe bet. Credit plays a large role in the homeowner's ability to get residential solar.
Unless the homeowner is paying in cash, the solar company will ask for a credit score to determine if the homeowner can qualify for their financing program. Go Solar Group requires a credit score of 650 or above.
The 2020 Federal tax credit incentive for solar is 26 percent of the solar array. Because this credit deducts from federal taxes owed, those who don't owe federal taxes don't qualify for this incentive.
While not qualifying for this credit doesn't mean an individual can't have solar, the credit accounts for a significant amount of the total cost of solar, which is why homeowners who don't qualify for this tax credit are advised against purchasing solar.