What’s the Cost of Going Solar? Solar Panels Installation Cost

Solar panels installation costs varies by provider but it's generally around the same cost. Here is the general cost you can expect for going solar.

Almost half of American homeowners say they’ve considered installing solar panels. It’s an excellent option for tiny house homeowners.

You might be looking to get off the grid or reduce your carbon footprint even more. Solar panels can help you do it. One question you and many homeowners have is about solar panels installation costs.

How much is going greener going to run you?

This guide will give you a good idea of what it will cost.

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Solar Panels Installation Cost Varies Between States

The first thing you need to know about the cost of solar panels is that pricing varies between states. The cost in Oregon and Texas is a lot less than in California, for example.

The costs vary more once you add in state incentives for installing solar panels. Some states offer plenty of incentives, while others have almost none.


Check-in with local government to determine which incentive programs you qualify for. You may be able to be eligible for a rebate, a lower price, or a tax credit.

Keep in mind these incentives won't be available for unpermitted tiny homes.

Costs Vary by Size of System

Another critical factor in determining the cost of solar panels is the size of the system you want to install. Generally speaking, the larger the system, the more you'll pay.

This makes sense, as larger systems need more solar panels to run. The upside of this is that you can generate more power with a more extensive set-up. Depending on your energy needs, you may need more or less power.

The average US household can run on a 5kW system. Larger households need bigger systems to supply their energy needs. Those with tiny houses can usually install a smaller system to meet their power needs.

If you opt for a larger system, you may be able to store the extra power you generate in a battery system. Battery systems designed for solar do exist, but they add to the cost of your installation. They can be a great idea if you live somewhere that doesn't get a lot of sun exposure or has many cloudy days.

Fortunately, there are now plug-in-play solar power kits that bundle panels and batteries for DIY or pro-installation.

Another option might be selling extra power back to the grid. Some states allow homeowners to hook up to the grid and sell their excess solar. This works well if you're in an area with lots of power demand, but not so well if your home is very rural.

What Will the Bill Look Like?

With these factors in mind, you want to get a reasonable estimate of what solar panel installation will run you.

The national average for a 5kW system is around $20,000. After incentives are considered, that cost falls to around $14,000 or lower.

Again, these numbers are national averages. You may pay more or less depending on the price of panels in your state, as well as the size of your system.

The bill can also change depending on who you've hired to install the solar panels. Some companies will do it for less, but they may use low-quality panels or not guarantee their work.

You should look for a team that backs up their home solar installation with a 25-year guarantee.

Factoring in the Costs of Financing

Another key consideration for homeowners like you is the cost of any financing you may need. Not everyone has $10,000 or $20,000 kicking around to put in a solar panel system.

If you need to take out a loan, you should factor the costs of borrowing money into the cost of your system.

Shop around for the best possible terms, such as a lower interest rate. This can help you keep the costs of your new solar panels in check.

You should also talk to solar panel installers about the incentives they offer. Some may be able to provide you with better financing terms. Others may be able to offer you a deal that can make managing the costs easier, such as a few months' payments free.

Are Solar Panels Worth It?

With a 5kW system running almost $20,000, your next question is whether solar panels are worth the cost.

The answer is yes! The cost of solar energy has dropped, which makes these systems even more affordable than they were just a few years ago.

State incentives and energy buy-back programs make the systems more affordable as well. Whether you save money upfront or recoup the costs by generating energy, you'll find switching to solar more affordable.

Solar energy also saves you on your power bill, even without a buy-back program. With energy costs set to keep rising, you'll save more with your system.

Over the lifespan of most systems, homeowners could save hundreds of thousands of dollars, depending on their energy needs.

If that's not enough to convince you solar panels are more than worth their cost, you can also consider the environmental benefits. Solar energy is completely renewable and doesn't give off greenhouse gases. As a result, solar panels can help you invest in a greener future.

You might have bought a tiny house to save yourself money or to make homeownership more affordable. You may have purchased a tiny house because you care about the environment and want to offset your ecological footprint.

Investing in solar panels can support either of these goals. They can also make your home investment even more worthwhile.

A Smart Investment for Your Home

Now you have a good idea of what the solar panels installation cost will be for your home. If you think solar panels are the way to go, it's time to get in touch with a local provider. Discover what options you have for making your home even greener.

Looking for more tips on how to make your tiny home even greener? You're in the right spot! Check out our blog for tiny home advice and ideas.

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