How much do solar panels cost and are they worth it?

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  • This guide is designed to answer the question of the cost of solar panels. Most importantly, if it’s worth it. Does the price of the entire new range imply that you plan to save for the long term? When will you get your money back?

    While everyone’s situation is different, the purpose of this guide is to provide clear examples of how your situation can benefit, from investing in solar panels to your house.

    To be clear, solar energy is a greener option. And in the future, as EVs put more and more pressure on the grid, their value is likely to continue to rise. But they’ll pay you first, so is it worth the investment? Or is just too much effort not enough?

    Photovoltaic panels installed on the roof of a new brick house in the UK

    Image credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

    How much does it cost to buy and install solar panels?

    If you’re viewing this guide after looking at solar panels in the past, know that they’re cheaper now than they used to be. In fact, prices have dropped 70% since they expanded in 2010. We cover the initial cost of the panel and its installation.

    There used to be government subsidies, where businesses provided solar panels for free. This is basically over, only a few are left. The idea is that they will install and deliver your panels and pay your electricity bills. They profit from the extra power added to the grid, often with 20-year contracts.

    Unlike government incentives such as the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG), you pay the cost up front. That means you have to keep all the benefits of selling the energy you produce back to the grid. This is more likely than ever because, as mentioned earlier, panel prices are low. And you can make money in the future.

    • He spent £15,000 in 2010 and now only needs £6,000. A huge difference could make solar panels available to many people who couldn’t afford them before.
    • Note that the average installation cost is £5,940, which is an annual saving of £339. But let’s go a step further.

    How much are these plates?

    The plate itself can be purchased directly. This means that you can choose to install it yourself, but it is not recommended. You can also hire a professional to handle your purchased panels.

    For a top-notch panel, let’s take a look at the LG NeON R. With an impressive 25-year warranty, this panel produces nearly 4% more power than the competition and up to 440W thanks to 20% efficiency. Another factor to check is efficiency after a 25 year warranty, over 85% is the last thing you want. As far as LG is concerned, that’s an impressive 90 percent.

    • The average three-person household in the UK needs to produce 3,000 kWh per year. That means about 10 panels, or about 20 square feet of ceiling space.
    • LG models cost £318 per panel, which means £10 needs £3,180 plus installation.

    How much does it cost to install solar panels?

    Most companies that install solar panels don’t advertise their prices during a breakdown. You just get the final price, including panels and installation. For this reason, it’s important to check the plates they offer so you know you’re getting what you want. Ideally, you want a 25-year warranty and at least 20% charge.

    The average price to install these or similar panels is £5,520, based on the previous $10 LG solar panels. That means you’ll pay £2,340 for setup. But this price includes components, wiring and other installation materials, so the actual labour cost is less than £2,000.

    Three Cost Case Studies for Solar Panel Systems

    • First, if you want to install a 1 kW system that requires at least about 8 square feet of ceiling space, it will cost around £1,840. However, the impact is small and may only cover bills for people living alone.
    • With a 2kW system they would need around 12sqm of roof space and the system would cost around £3680. This might cover your electricity bill, but it won’t generate much for your payment. greenhouse gas.
    • Opt for a larger three-story single-family home and you’ll be close to the 4kW system you need if you’re going to pay your bills and get your SEG back. This requires 20 sq ft of roof space and costs around £6,000.

    The location of these places is unlikely to have much impact on prices, but depending on the amount of sunlight, it can affect how much you save on your bills and how much revenue you earn by sending electricity back to the grid. This varies widely, so it’s best to ask for a free local quote to learn about opportunities in the area.

    Roof with solar panels and crates

    Image credit: Getty Images/Westend61

    How much will I get paid for the electricity produced by my solar panels?

    (Smart Export Guarantee) State-subsidized SEG tariffs mean you can make a decent amount of money by selling your electricity to the grid. Considering how much you save on electricity bills, this can add up, meaning panel installation costs will quickly depreciate.

    The price your supplier pays for your electricity varies from company to company. Most require a battery system to be installed, so this can mean higher upfront costs. The best option at launch is Social Energy, offering 20p per kWh (limited to 1,000 kWh). So this is Tesla 12p/kWh, compared to EDF Energy this is always down to 1.5p, but many companies offer around 5p.

    According to the Energy Efficiency Trust, the average household could earn between £65 and £125 a year at just 3.99 p/kWh.

    Another factor to consider is the value it can add to your property. Josh Jackman of The Eco Experts told Ideal Home: “Solar panels tend to make selling a home easier, not harder. Recent research has shown that homes with solar panels generally sell. Board homes are 4.1% more expensive.

    What will affect how I get paid for solar energy?

    The biggest factor that affects how you get paid is the amount of energy you generate. The second is what you get paid for. But, of course, the amount of energy produced for sale is not the same as the amount of energy produced by solar panels. You should also consider how much to use.

    What you use matters because it can determine what you have left to resell. So while you’re using most of your power during the sunny day, you’ll be making more power at night, depending on whether you have battery storage. Otherwise, that power will be lost and you’ll be charging the grid you need during dark times when it’s not generating electricity.

    As mentioned above, the company you sell to also matters, as fees vary widely between 1.5 p/kWh and 20 p/kWh.

    Of course, the initial cost also affects all of this. Consume more and get as many solar panels as you can, and you’ll generate more electricity than you need, which means you have more to sell. But when the average electricity price is higher than the buyback, you still have to wait a while to pay the initial cost of the solar panels.

    How long does it take to pay for the cost of solar panels?

    Solar panel costs and installation costs can take years to settle. If we were to use a standard 3.5 kWh system that cost around £4,800 to install and was ready to use, it would probably take 9 to 21 years to pay for itself.

    It depends on many factors, such as where you live, how much electricity you generate, and how long you use it. And then of course the money you get from the energy you sell under SEG.

    • You can save up to £440 on your electricity bill if you live in London, and up to £125 at SEG. The scheme costs £4,800 and you can pay it back in less than nine years.
    • Go further north to Stirling and things may be different. There, you can save up to £412 on your bill and earn up to £95 on SEG. For the same cost of installing solar panels, this can be recouped in 10 years.

    Both examples use the preferred example with the highest bill savings and highest SEG rate.

    Can I get help with solar panel prices?

    The government used to come up with programs that would let you partially subsidize or fully pay for your solar panels. Because panel prices have fallen so low, the latest system, SEG, rebates money from electricity sales, excluding the initial cost of solar panels.

    However, until March 2022, there will still be opportunities to use funds from Green Homes. This provides two-thirds of the cost of installing solar panels (up to £5,000). For low-income households, this can be as high as £10,000, which in some cases may cover the full cost. But since this is disabled, if you’re reading it right now, that’s not the goal.

    The only option is to outsource a private loan to cover the initial cost. Because solar panels save on electricity bills and you can make money with SEG’s quote, you can pay off your loan in a few years. But keep in mind that this is a more permanent money-making solution, so any interest-bearing loan means it may take longer to break even.

    Another option is that you can install it yourself to save upfront costs. But Eco Expert’s Josh Jackman doesn’t recommend it. “If you did it yourself, we estimate you would have to pay around £3,000 more for the base material,” he said. “Unless you are a Personally Accredited Installer for the Microbiological Certification Program, you will not receive payment for the Smart Export Guarantee.”

    Farm with rooftop solar panels, terrace and swimming pool

    Image credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

    Three reasons why solar panels are valuable

    1. You become an environmental warrior

    You help the environment by generating electricity from sustainable sources, which means you can help globally in the long run.

    2. You don’t pay your bills

    You no longer have to pay a dime for your electricity bill, so factor that into your price now. This could become more serious in the coming weeks and months due to higher energy prices.

    3. You make money

    In short, SEG allows you to start monetizing the electricity generated by your solar panels. But with more electricity and rising prices, and the rapid growth of electric vehicles, you can make more money in the near future.

    3 reasons why solar panels might not be right for you

    1. You need cash

    Start-up costs are not trivial, and the payback time, including paying bills and resale of electricity, is at least closer to a decade.

    2. You can’t stand maintenance

    You can’t avoid cleaning your solar panels and doing some maintenance. If something goes wrong, you may incur additional charges, or you may have to pay a professional to inspect your installation.

    3. You may not need the sun

    If you use very little energy, the cost of panels and installation may not be worth it when you pay your bills.

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