*Cost data based on quotes for fully-installed solar panel systems submitted on our platform. Prices are shown after applying the 26% federal tax credit.
A typical solar panel installation in the United States will cost anywhere between $10,197 to $12,463, after claiming the 26% federal solar tax credit. The average price for installed residential solar power systems is currently $2.55 per watt.
Solar panel cost is affected by many factors, including where you live, the system size, and the brand of solar panels you use.
SolarReviews sees more than 1,000 solar quotes per day issued by solar companies to homeowners on our site. By using these quotes, we are able to get an accurate snapshot of current home solar prices.
If you want an exact estimate for how much solar panels will cost for your specific home, try using our solar calculator above.
The location of a home affects solar pricing in a few ways.
First, the amount of sunlight available dictates how many solar modules you will need to power your home. The more solar panels you need, the higher the overall upfront cost of the system.
Market prices also vary between locations because of things like competition between solar installers, local job volumes, the cost of business overheads, and different state and local policies.
Cost of a 6kW system
(After tax credit)
show before tax
|District of Columbia||$2.88||$12,796|
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Prices based on a 5.7kW system, after 26% federal tax credit
The size of a solar panel system also plays a role in how much the installation will cost.
Larger solar installations will typically have a lower cost per watt, because the panels can be purchased at a ‘bulk price’. However, these larger solar systems will still have a higher total cost, because they are made up of more individual panels.
|System size*||Avg cost
Avg system cost
(After tax credit)
show before tax
Below are the solar panel system costs for the 20 most frequently-installed residential solar panels.
Many of the solar modules on this list are from trusted manufacturers with great efficiency ratings and warranties, which is likely the reason they are so popular.
|Panel model||Avg cost per watt||Avg 6kW system cost|
The cost of solar doesn't just include the equipment and installation costs - it’s also made up of permitting costs, inspection costs, and installer profit margins.
These different components are what make the price of solar fluctuate between installations. Some of the factors that affect solar power system installation costs for specific homes include:
Homes that use more electricity will need more solar panels to cover their energy needs.
Although solar panels do get cheaper on a per-watt basis, the overall cost of the system will increase as more panels are added.
But, the higher a home’s energy usage, the more solar panels can save the homeowners on their energy bills.
The price of solar panels can vary depending on the type of solar panels you choose.
There are two main types of solar panels for residential solar installations: monocrystalline and polycrystalline. Monocrystalline solar panels tend to be more efficient and more expensive than other solar panels. Polycrystalline panels have a lower efficiency rating and come at a lower price point.
The type of inverter you buy will also influence the cost of your solar system.
You may see some solar quotes with prices that seem too good to be true.
If you get quoted for a ridiculously cheap price, the installer might be using low-quality equipment or an unsustainable pricing model. You want to use a solar installer that is charging enough so that they can stay in business - as you’ll be relying on them for the next 25 years!
It’s important to make sure that your installer is giving you the best quality at the best price possible. This is why getting multiple solar quotes is so important.
The overall cost of solar can be influenced by the solar incentives available.
Across the U.S., homeowners can apply for the federal solar tax credit, also called the ITC. The solar tax credit makes installing solar more cost-effective by providing homeowners with a tax credit equal to 26% of the cost of their installed solar panel system.
Local solar tax incentives and rebates can end up saving homeowners thousands on a solar installation, especially when they’re used with the federal solar tax credit.
See what solar incentives are available in your area by using our solar panel calculator.
Individual photovoltaic solar panels sell for between $0.40 per watt to $1.10 per watt, not including installation costs.
This means individual solar panel prices can range between $80 and $400, depending on the size and quality of the panel. You can expect to pay this much per solar panel if you’re doing a DIY solar installation.
The median cost per watt of residential solar energy systems has declined by 70% in the past two decades. These cost drops are largely due to improvements in solar technology and manufacturing.
However, according to the Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), price decreases have slowed down to about 5% per year in the past few years.
In order to continue seeing significant reductions in the installed cost of solar, we will need to find ways to cut down on soft costs, such as labor, overhead profit margins, and permitting costs.
How much solar panels cost shouldn’t be the only thing you consider when you’re thinking of switching to solar.
Solar panels save the average homeowner between $900 and $1,200 a year on their utility bills!
Your actual solar savings will depend on the size of your system, the cost of electricity in your region, and of course - how many kilowatt-hours of electricity you use. It also depends on what kind of net metering policy is available in your area.
Luckily, our solar savings estimator calculates how much solar will save you on your electricity bill by taking all of these factors into account. The solar calculator will also determine how long your solar payback period will be.
Solar payback periods can now be as little as 5 to 6 years, allowing homeowners who go solar to enjoy 20 years or more of free electricity!
Our solar panel calculator is the easiest way to determine the costs and savings of a solar panel installation for your specific home.
All you need is your address and the value of your monthly electric bill, and our solar calculator will determine your local utility company’s electricity rates and how much power you use in order to tell you:
So, what are you waiting for? With the low price of solar and the federal solar tax credit, the best time to go solar is now! Use our solar calculator and find out what solar savings are in store for you.
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