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#1 CaliBella

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 01:34 AM

Thinking of getting some estimates and hopefully installed by September and coverting all our hook-ups and water heater from gas to electric. What is a fair estimate? Does anyone know if the tax break is still applicable and if so, how much can we write off of the initial cost? Any input on the panels versus the solar tiles?

Also, if anyone has them, how much money do they save you on your bill (not considering the original costs)?



#2 seany

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 03:20 AM

This is such a vague post. You really need to offer more details for anyone to possibly answer it. 

 

- where do you live? Southern Cali or ME? Climate and days of sunshine/yr matter. Different states have different tax incentives.

- what's your current electric utilization? kW-h/mo?

- what's the exposure of your house? Do you have a roof that has a good southern exposure and how many square feet?

- how are you planning to convert your hookups from gas to electric? What in your home is gas? Your hot water heater? 

 

It's great that you're thinking about this, but unreasonable to just ask the questions you did without providing some specific information ;) 



#3 Eco

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 04:03 AM

Most excellent response Seany! 

 

I can only add looking into any federal tax credits if they are still in place for green energy and what your electric provider will pay you when/if you backfeed current to them. 



#4 seany

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 04:48 AM

Thanks, Eco. As a contractor, like you, the only Fed credit I know of right now in 2013 is that there's a $500 energy improvement deduction for qualified renovations. But there are other state incentives, depending on where you live. Hence my question. I looked back at CaliBella's recent posts and it seems she's living near LA. That's a far cry from the expertise around here, as 95+% of this message board is located in the northeast somewhere.  I can't even comment on the economics or feasibility of doing something in in CA - it's just not in my realm. But, the same questions I listed apply...



#5 CaliBella

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 06:43 AM

Thank you so much for taking the time to reply! I am int eh fact finding stage and am seeking info before having someone who makes a comission off of this do an estimate. I also want to see if there are low or no interest loans for this sort of thing, or if the cost would be more resonable than I am assuming. I am not so much into loans, but if it would pay off (i love the earth and karma pay off, but I am also a realist and not independently wealthy), I would be down.

 Our stove, dryer and water heater is gas. I am in a very sunny part of socal in the high desert in los angeles county, so solar is pretty popular here (new to the neighborhood, but as soon as I know my neighbors better will ask who did their's for more advice). Our home is about 2,200 square feet (it's cheap up here). Our home is facing west. Our largest roof slant is facing north west (I don't know if this make a difference).don't use a lot of electricity, but use a lot of gas during the winter (heater). I don't have a bill right now to look at my usage, but my electric is lower than most of my friend's who live in small apartments. Electric is never over 150, even when it's 110 degrees here. Are solar dealers more like salesman, or engineer and technician types? Is there a forum abotu this you can point me to? I've wanted to do this for so long, as I feel I do nothing but complain about lack of promotion for alternative fuel. I just want to do this before it turns into a fleeting thought, but I also want to be smart about it.

PS-there are quite a few posters out here, mostly up in the bay area, but also a few in san diego :D.

Thanks again!



#6 CaliBella

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 06:49 AM

Thanks, Eco. As a contractor, like you, the only Fed credit I know of right now in 2013 is that there's a $500 energy improvement deduction for qualified renovations. But there are other state incentives, depending on where you live. Hence my question. I looked back at CaliBella's recent posts and it seems she's living near LA. That's a far cry from the expertise around here, as 95+% of this message board is located in the northeast somewhere.  I can't even comment on the economics or feasibility of doing something in in CA - it's just not in my realm. But, the same questions I listed apply...

Do you know if it's 500 a year for a pre approved amount of time, or a one time/only one year deduction? I hope that's not a really stupid question. I just know I can deduct things like my sewing machine, partially annualy, until the entire value has been deducted over a max of 3 years. I know it's nto even teh same tax classification, but I guess I felt the need to clarify my reasoning bhind a potentially ridiculous question ;).



#7 seany

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 07:06 AM

It's a one time deduction of $500 for energy efficient improvements - that's what's on the Fed-approved IRS deductions for 2013.

 

Cali - you really need to talk to your neighbors w/ solar install, local contractors, read local publications, figure out the CA tax incentives, etc.  The Vibes board is mostly northeast people. Yes there's a few west coast people on here, but none that I know of that could give you the info you're looking for.  If you were in New England, there'd be a dozen of us that would have valid opinions. I really can't comment on CA stuff. You'd think it would be the same, but the costs are way higher there all around.

 

Good luck!



#8 CTMuleman

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 04:16 PM

There is also another Federal Tax Credit that may apply in addition to the one Seany referenced.  It is called the Residential Energy Efficient Property Tax Credit.  See IRS Form 5695, Part I for this credit.

 

http://www.irs.gov/p...s-pdf/f5695.pdf

 

The credit Seany indicated is Part II of Form 5695. (Nonbusiness Energy Property Credit)

 

 

The Residential Energy Efficient Property Tax Credit applies to some solar types of energy efficient property.  You'll have to read the IRS info to see if what you are looking at will apply or not.  If it does apply, the credit is up to 30% of your costs.  Any unsed credit can be carried forward and it is for costs incurred through the end of 2016.  These parameters differ greatly from the $500 Nonbusiness Energy Property Credit.

 

Hope this helps.  Do a little reading, ask your contractors if what you're planning meets the qualifications for the credit.  This is a substantial credit that could be a game changer in your decision making (unlike the potential $500 other credit which is essentially a drop in the bucket for what you'll need to spend).  Good luck!



#9 CaliBella

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 07:57 PM

Thank you very much! That is a huge game changer! I got the nerve to introduce myself and talk to a neighbor this morning. She said her's were around 10k. If I can write 3,300 off like muleman said, plus the 500, that would be great.  She also said I might get a price break if I wait until mid fall becuase most people get them now- during tax rebate time or during the summer months.  She also said go for the panels and not the tiles. Thank you again for all the info!



#10 CTMuleman

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 08:16 PM

First off you need to make sure whatever you do qualifies for one of the credits.  If it qualifies, it will most likely just qualify for one or the other and not both.  The tax credit is not a deduction/write-off.  It is a tax credit which means it offsets your actual tax dollar for dollar.



#11 CaliBella

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Posted 15 March 2013 - 09:53 PM

Talked to my accountant.  said I can write a third of the cost off as a biz expense since I run it out of our home and my company is based on being eco friendly!!! Also, I can qualify for all these other CA green energy buisiness deductions!!! In addition, if we file seperatley, my husband can claim the 500 dollar fed rebate (but not the other one)!

Thank you so much for all your help and asking questions I hadn't considered. I seriously prob would have gotten ripped off, or just turned off by the cost without your input <3



#12 George

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Posted 01 April 2013 - 04:15 AM

I have a meeting on Friday with a company who wants to install panels on the roof of my house. The deal is that they own the panels and sell extra electricity to utility company. In return, I get free electric.



#13 George

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Posted 01 April 2013 - 04:18 AM

I forgot. There is a $43 per month lease fee for panels.



#14 TEO

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Posted 01 April 2013 - 12:20 PM

So you would be in effect paying $43 per month for your electricity?  What about those times where the panels do not generate enough electricity to cover your use, would you then be billed from the grid for your consumption.  Additionally does your electric service provider have a monthly minimum regardless of usage?

 

 

These questions are based on chatting with a couple people in Southern, VT who were surprised to find themselves still paying electric bills some months.



#15 Hksavo

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 10:36 PM

We are getting ready to start to build @ in debate of doing solar panels on our house. Does anyone out there have any positive/negative input?

#16 Royal

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 12:43 AM

LOVE THAT CHICKEN FROM
POPEYES!!!!




 



#17 Royal

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Posted 16 September 2014 - 04:41 AM

SOLAR PANTIES!!!!