* 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.
Updated October 30, 2020
It might be “California’s Country Music Capital,” but we’ve got one reason for you Bakersfield homeowners to stop cryin’ into your beers: solar panels on your roof can save you a lot of money! That’s because electricity in California is expensive, which you know, because you live there.
This page is a short guide to the costs and financial rewards of home solar in Bakersfield, California. It’s got info on relevant California incentives and solar laws, but it is not meant to be your only source of information about going solar in Bakersfield. Check out our main California solar page for more extensive content about all things related to home solar in The Golden State!
You can install solar panels on your roof that will greatly reduce your power bill, paying off their cost in short order and essentially making you money like an investment over the long-term. Solar panels are covered by 25-year warranties, which ensures your roof will be paying dividends long after all the neighborhood kids are out of college.
Let’s dive in to how solar can work for you in Bakersfield!
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Prices based on a 7.0kW system, after 26% federal tax credit
California has benefited from a few factors that make solar here a better investment than it is in other places. First, the state has relatively high electricity costs, meaning the panels pay back their cost faster than in other places. Second, the Golden State has had a good history of supporting solar buyers with rebates and other incentives. But with the price to install solar at an all-time low, those incentives are all but gone.
That’s okay, though! The federal solar tax credit takes 26% of the cost of your system away, and the state of California does still have a few other juicy tidbits.
The state of California exempts home solar installations from property tax. That’s wonderful news for you, since the value of your home will go up by several thousand dollars when you add solar panels. A very solid study of home value increases from solar panels showed an average increase of about 70% of the gross (pre-incentive) cost to install the system. That’s exactly the same as the cost after the tax credit, so the average system of 3.85-kW at $13,100 might add about $9,200 in value to your home!
As long as you install solar before a 2024 deadline to end the property tax exemption, thank a state legislator!
The federal solar tax credit is equal to 26% of the total cost of installing solar panels on your home. The amount of the tax credit is then deducted from your federal taxes. You can claim the credit over several years if the amount you owe in taxes is less than the amount of your tax credit. You can only take advantage of the federal tax credit if you pay federal income taxes.
Keep in mind that the federal solar tax credit is set to step down at the end of 2022, falling from 26% of costs to just 22%. So, the best time to go solar is now, so you can maximize your solar savings.
The answer to this question depends on your electricity usage. Generally speaking, the higher your power usage, the greater your potential savings are from installing solar.
The average monthly electricity usage in California is about 547 kWh per month. However, you are most likely using a lot more than this since this average includes small apartments and condos.
The Bakersfield solar panel savings calculator uses our database of electric rates from local utilities to convert your monthly power bill into how much electricity your home uses. From there, the calculator can work out how many solar panels you need to offset your power usage, how much a solar system will cost based on prices of local solar companies, and the amount of money you will save on your electric bill.
(forecast avg California electric rates over the next 25 years)
(Savings shown after repayments of capital)
Solar panels have fallen in price by more than 80% in the last ten years. In 2021 they also remain subsidized by the 26% federal tax credit and the net metering law making them an excellent investment. They offer a return well above the long term average return from both the share market and also property investment.
Another way to look at this question is the levelized amount you will pay for each kWh of power you will use over the next 25 years with and without solar panels. As you can see below the savings are significant.
Check out all of the ways energy providers of can help you be more energy efficient and save money.
|Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit||Federal||Personal Tax Credit|
|LADWP - Net Metering||Utility||Net Metering|
|California Solar Initiative - Single-Family Affordable Solar Housing (SASH) Program||State||Low-Income Program|
|Self-Generation Incentive Program||State||Battery Rebate|
|Property Tax Exclusion for Solar Energy Systems||State||Property Tax Incentive|
|City of San Francisco - Low-Income Solar Energy Incentive Program||City||Low-Income Program|
|Sonoma County - Energy Independence Program||Local||PACE Financing|
|NEM 2.0||State||Net Metering|
Eligibility: Federal incentive
Type: Personal Tax Credit
Eligibility: Utility incentive
Type: Net Metering
Note: Please keep in mind that the best source of up-to-date information on incentives are the solar installers who specialize in your area.
After NEM 3.0 is enacted in California, the Golden State will likely not have a true net metering system, with reduced compensation and increased monthly fees on solar owners.
California regulators are changing how solar owners connect to the grid & get credit for solar energy. The changes could greatly affect the solar industry.