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2023 Solar Tax Credit: What You Need to Know

Updated: May 1, 2023

Solar Tax credit

Key Takeaways In This Article:

  • 2023 Solar Tax Credit: federal incentive for homeowners to install solar panels, offering financial savings and environmental benefits.

  • Gradual reduction in credit value highlights importance of acting sooner for maximum savings.

  • State and local incentives can be combined with Federal Solar Tax Credit to further reduce installation costs.

  • Inflation Reduction Act increased credit from 26% to 30% until 2033, stepping down to 26% in 2034 and 22% in 2035 before phasing out.


Let's shed some light on the 2023 Solar Tax Credit and why it's such a big deal for you as homeowners. So, here's the scoop: the Solar Tax Credit is a federal incentive designed to encourage homeowners like you to embrace solar energy. It's like a little reward for going green!

Now, why should you care? Well, this tax credit can significantly reduce the cost of installing solar panels on your home. Imagine the long-term savings on your energy bills and the positive impact on the environment. It's a win-win!

But here's the thing you need to know: the Solar Tax Credit is going through some changes in 2023. They're gradually stepping down the credit value, making it even more crucial to take action sooner rather than later.

Now, I know what you're thinking, "Am I eligible for this awesome tax credit?" The good news is, many homeowners qualify! We'll delve into the eligibility criteria and the process of claiming the credit in detail, so don't worry.

Also, did you know there are additional state and local incentives you can stack with the Federal Solar Tax Credit? It's like adding sprinkles to your solar savings sundae!

Now that you have a taste of what's coming, let's dive deeper into the nitty-gritty details of the 2023 Solar Tax Credit. Stay tuned, and get ready to harness the power of the sun while saving some serious cash!

Understanding the Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC)

representation of solar tax credit

Alright, now that we know the basics of the 2023 Solar Tax Credit, let's dive a little deeper into what it means for homeowners like you.

The Solar Tax Credit has been around for quite some time now, with bipartisan support since its creation under the Energy Policy Act of 2005. Originally set to expire in 2007, the credit proved to be a hit with homeowners nationwide and was renewed by Congress multiple times.

And, as of August 2022, the Solar Tax Credit received a boost! The Inflation Reduction Act increased the credit from 26% to 30%, meaning even greater savings for homeowners who go solar. This 30% credit will be available until Jan. 1, 2033, when it will step down to 26%. In 2034, it'll drop to 22% before phasing out entirely in 2035.

Let's break down an example to see how it works. Say you spend $30,000 on your home solar installation. With the 30% tax credit, you'll receive a federal tax credit worth $9,000. That's a pretty sweet deal, right?

Here's the best part: the Solar Tax Credit is a dollar-for-dollar tax credit. That means if you owe $10,000 in federal taxes, your $9,000 credit will reduce your liability to just $1,000. And if your credit is worth more than what you owe, you can roll the remainder over into the following year.

Now, can you see that this is not an opportunity to sleep on, you should act fast if you reap these rewards of the Solar Tax Credit!

Eligibility and Claiming the 2023 Solar Tax Credit

First things first, let's make sure you're eligible. To qualify for the credit, you must have a solar panel system installed between January 1, 2022, and December 31 of 2032. The system must be in your primary residence, and you must own it, not lease it.

Now, how do you claim the credit? It's pretty simple, actually. You'll need to file IRS Form 5695 with your federal tax return. This form will calculate your Solar Tax Credit based on the cost of your solar panel installation. So, keep those receipts handy!

If you're not sure how to fill out the form or need additional guidance, consult a tax professional. They'll be able to help you navigate the process and ensure you receive the maximum credit possible.

But what about leased systems? Good news! You can still claim the Solar Tax Credit for leased systems, but the process is a bit different. Instead of claiming the credit on your federal tax return, the credit goes to the solar company that owns the panels. They may pass the savings on to you in the form of lower monthly lease payments. If you are somewhat confused and need guidance on how to navigate all of these, you should contact a reputable solar expert.

State and Local Solar Incentives

Did you know that in addition to the federal Solar Tax Credit, many states offer additional incentives for going solar? It's true! These state and local incentives can significantly reduce the cost of your solar panel installation and maximize your savings.

So, what types of incentives are we talking about? Well, it varies by state, but some examples include cash rebates, property tax exemptions, and sales tax exemptions. Additionally, some utilities offer incentives such as net metering, which credits you for excess energy your solar panels generate.

Now, here's the exciting part: you can combine these state and local incentives with the Federal Solar Tax Credit for even greater savings! It's like stacking coupons at the grocery store - the more you stack, the more you save.

For example, some popular state incentives include the California Solar Initiative, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, and the New Jersey Clean Energy Program. These programs offer a variety of incentives and rebates, so be sure to check with your state's energy office to see what's available in your area.

So, what are you waiting for? Take advantage of these state and local incentives, stack them with the federal Solar Tax Credit, and start saving big on your energy bills.

Solar Tax Credit and Related Solar Policies

It's not just the Solar Tax Credit that can impact your solar panel installation. There are a few related solar policies you should be aware of to maximize your savings and benefits.

First up is net metering. This policy allows you to receive credit for excess energy your solar panels generate and send back to the grid. So, if you generate more energy than you use, you'll get a credit on your bill for the excess energy. It's like rolling over your unused minutes on a cell phone plan!

Another related policy is solar energy storage incentives. These incentives encourage homeowners to install solar energy storage systems, like batteries, to store excess energy generated by solar panels. This can further reduce your reliance on the grid and save you money on your energy bills.

Now, let's talk about the future outlook for solar incentives and policy changes. The solar industry is constantly evolving, and policymakers are always looking for ways to incentivize the switch to clean energy. As such, it's important to stay up-to-date on changes to solar policies and incentives that may impact your savings.

For example, some states are transitioning to time-of-use rates, which charge different rates for energy usage depending on the time of day. This can impact the ROI of your solar panel installation, so it's important to consider these changes when making your decision.

Thing is, you need to stay informed and take advantage of related solar policies and incentives, if you want to maximize your savings and reap the benefits of going solar for years to come.


What happens if I can't use the entire tax credit in the year I install my solar panels?

If your Solar Tax Credit is worth more than what you owe in federal taxes, you can roll over the remainder into the following year. Consult with a tax professional for guidance on how to best maximize your credit.

Can I combine state and local incentives with the Solar Tax Credit?

Can I claim the solar panel tax credit if I'm not a homeowner?

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