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Solar Panel Cost in South Carolina 2024


Solar Panel Cost in South Carolina

If you want to make a switch to solar in South Carolina, 2024 is the best year so far. Far better than the previous years . Let's find out why we think so in this article.


Key Takeaways

  • Cost Breakdown: In 2024, the average cost for a 5 kW system in South Carolina is $13,500, dropping to $9,450 after the federal tax credit.

  • Financial Incentives: Federal ITC covers 30% of installation costs, and the state offers a 25% tax credit up to $3,500.

  • Energy Savings: A 5 kW system can save about $1,550 annually, totaling about $31,000 over 20 years.

  • Property Value: Solar panels can increase your home's value by 3-4%.

  • Financing Options: Solar loans, home equity loans, leases, and PPAs help manage upfront costs.


Solar Panel Cost in South Carolina 2024

Average Cost Breakdown

In 2024, the average cost to install solar panels in South Carolina hovers around $13,500 for a 5 kW system before incentives. After applying the federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC), which covers 30% of the installation cost, this price can drop to approximately $9450. For larger systems, such as a 10 kW installation, the cost doubles to about $27,000 before incentives, reducing significantly after applying available credits.


Here's a breakdown of solar panel cost in South Carolina by system size:

System Size

Average Cost 

Average Cost (after federal tax credit)

3kW

$8,100

$5,670

5kW

$13,500

$9,450

7kW

$18,900

$13,230

9kW

$24,300

$17,010

11kW

$29,700

$20,790


Comparison with National Averages

South Carolina's solar costs are slightly lower than the national average. While the national average sits at about $3.01 per watt, South Carolina averages around $2.7 per watt. This makes South Carolina an appealing state for solar investments, offering fantastic value with its lower-than-average installation costs and generous sunlight.


Factors Affecting Solar Panel Cost

Several factors influence the final cost of your solar installation:

  • System Size: Larger systems cost more but reduce the cost per watt.

  • Panel Type: Monocrystalline panels, known for their efficiency, typically cost more than polycrystalline or thin-film panels. 

  • Roof Characteristics: Roof complexity, such as multiple angles or additional stories, can increase installation labor and costs. 

  • Local Permits and Fees: Permitting costs and local fees vary and can affect the overall price. 

  • Installer Choice: Different installers offer various price points and service levels, impacting your total expenditure.


Choosing the right combination of system size, panel type, and installer can optimize your costs and ensure the best return on investment.


How to Reduce Your Solar Panel Cost in South Carolina 

If you're looking to cut down your solar panel costs, leveraging solar tax credits can significantly reduce your initial investment and maximize your savings. 


South Carolina Solar Tax Credits

South Carolina offers robust incentives to make solar energy more affordable for homeowners. The state provides a Solar Energy Tax Credit that allows you to claim 25% of the cost of your solar power system on your state taxes, up to $3,500 per year. This credit can be carried forward for up to ten years, ensuring you maximize your savings over time. This means that if your solar installation costs $14,000, you could potentially reduce your state tax bill by $3,500 for several years until the credit is fully utilized. 


Federal Solar Tax Credit

In addition to state incentives, the federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC) remains a powerful tool to reduce your solar installation costs. For 2024, the ITC allows you to deduct 30% of your solar installation costs from your federal taxes. This applies to the entire cost of your system, including equipment, labor, and permitting. If your system costs $18,900, you could reduce your federal tax liability by $5,670, bringing your effective cost down significantly. 


Combining Credits for Maximum Savings

One of the best strategies to maximize your savings is to combine the state and federal credits. For example, if your solar system costs $18,900, the federal tax credit would reduce this by $5,670, and the state credit could further reduce your costs by up to $3,500. This layered approach can make a substantial difference, lowering your overall investment and shortening your payback period. 


How to Claim Your Credits

Claiming these credits is straightforward:

1. For the Federal ITC: File IRS Form 5695 with your federal tax return. This form will help you calculate the credit and apply it to your tax liability.

2. For the State Credit: Use South Carolina's tax forms to claim the state solar tax credit. Ensure you keep all receipts and documentation related to your solar installation to support your claims. 


By leveraging these tax credits, South Carolina homeowners can make solar energy a financially viable and environmentally friendly investment. With the right approach, you can significantly reduce your upfront costs and enjoy long-term savings on your energy bills.


Financial Benefits of Installing Solar Panels in South Carolina


Solar Panel Cost in South Carolina 2024

Energy Savings and ROI

When you install solar panels in South Carolina, the primary financial benefit you'll notice is the substantial savings on your energy bills. On average, a 5 kW solar panel system can save you about $1,550 per year on electricity costs. Over 20 years, this adds up to savings of approximately $31,000. Additionally, the payback period for solar panel systems in South Carolina is typically between 7 to 9 years, meaning you'll recoup your investment well before your panels reach the end of their lifespan. 


Impact on Property Value

Installing solar panels also boosts your home's property value. It is evident that homes with solar panel systems sell for more than those without. In South Carolina, this can mean an increase in property value by around 3-4%. This not only enhances your home's marketability but also provides a solid return on investment if you decide to sell your property in the future. 


Local Incentive Programs

Apart from the federal and state tax credits that can significantly reduce your solar panel cost, here are some other financial benefits you can get from installing solar panels in South Carolina:

  • Santee Cooper Rebate: If you're a customer of Santee Cooper, you can receive up to $5,700 in rebates, depending on the size of your solar system.

  • Net Metering: South Carolina's net metering program lets you earn credits on your electric bill for excess energy your system generates and feeds back into the grid. This helps you save even more on your monthly energy costs.


How to Finance Your Solar Investment in South Carolina 

  • Solar Loans: One of the most popular ways to finance solar panels is through solar Loans. These loans allow you to spread out the cost of your SoCal installation over several years. This can be an attractive option if you prefer to own your system and benefit from all available tax incentives, including the 30% federal tax credit. Home equity loans typically offer lower interest rates than unsecured loans because they are secured against your home. However, they require you to have sufficient equity built up on your property. With a home equity loan, you receive a lump sum to pay for your solar installation. On the flip side, a line of credit (HELOC) works more like a credit card, allowing you to draw funds as needed and pay interest only on the amount you borrow.

  • Solar Leases and Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs):If upfront costs are a concern, consider a solar lease or power purchase agreement (PPA). With a lease, you pay a fixed monthly fee to use the solar energy system, but the solar company retains ownership of the panels. PPAs are similar, but you pay for the energy produced by the panels rather than leasing the equipment. While these options lower your initial costs, they also mean you won't qualify for tax incentives and will have lower long-term savings compared to owning your system. 


Investing in solar panels in South Carolina in 2024 is a smart financial decision that can lead to significant energy savings, increased property value, and environmental benefits. With generous tax incentives and flexible financing, there's never been a better time to go solar. Ready to make the leap? Get your free solar quote with us today, and start enjoying the benefits of clean, renewable energy!


FAQ


How much does it cost to install solar panels in South Carolina in 2024?

In 2024, the average cost to install a 5 kW solar panel system in South Carolina is around $13,500 before incentives. After applying the 30% federal tax credit, this cost drops to approximately $9,450. Larger systems, like a 10 kW installation, can cost about $27,000 before incentives, with significant reductions after credits.

What are the available tax credits for solar panels in South Carolina?

How do solar panels impact property value in South Carolina?


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