Why You Should Go Solar in Los Angeles

Going solar in Los Angeles

Updated November 26, 2021

Los Angeles is a large, sunny city with the perfect conditions for solar power. However, if you have decided to go solar in Los Angeles, there are some things you should know before making a final purchase.

Wondering what you need to do to go solar in LA? This post will explore why homeowners should go solar in the LA area and how they can do it!

California: The Golden State

California is a fantastic place to live, especially if you can get solar panels on your roof. It’s the perfect place for alternative energy systems because of its abundant sunshine and friendly policies. With 284 days of pure sunshine per year in the LA area, solar panels are a no-brainer.

California has some of the country’s best incentives, rebates, and tax credits that make buying a new solar power system easy and affordable. As a result, the Energy Commission reports that California currently leads the United States in solar adoption.

Did you know that California gets 70% of its energy from clean sources? That’s why it has the most installed solar capacity of any state in the country. Of course, California has always been at the forefront of clean technology. Still, Los Angeles is leading other cities in renewable power due to its many incentives and programs to support solar energy.

The LA Solar Initiative

The LA Solar Initiative was created in 2014 to collaborate between the City of Los Angeles and SoCal Edison to promote solar power installations on public and private buildings across the LA area. To accomplish this, they have made several solar requirements for new construction. They have also provided funding to help offset the costs of going solar.

Due to this initiative, Los Angeles has been #1 in solar across the country for three consecutive years. California is moving forward to initiate a program that encourages homeowners throughout the state to install solar panels on their roofs. The California Energy Commission also voted unanimously to mandate solar panels and battery storage in new commercial buildings and specific multifamily residences starting January 1, 2023.

Why You Should Go Solar in the Los Angeles Area

There are plenty of reasons to install solar panels if you live in the LA area; some of these include:

  • By using clean energy, you can aid in the reduction of climate change.
  • Solar power is a renewable resource that will never run out!
  • It’s an excellent method to save money on your electricity bill.
  • There are rebates and tax credits available for all homeowners who go solar!
  • There is no need to worry about where the next batch of energy is coming from; with solar panels on your roof, you’ll have a steady stream of power for years to come.
  • California has some of the best incentives in the country for those who convert to solar power.

How to Get Started Going Solar in LA

If you have decided to convert your home or business into a “solar-powered” building, then there are some things you should know before making your purchase.

  • When getting started with solar power in Los Angeles, it’s essential to figure out if your building is even suitable for solar power. The first thing you’ll want to do is get an energy audit. This will give you a detailed map of where your energy use comes from and roughly how much each type uses. 
  • If the auditor finds that solar power would be feasible for your building, they can write up a report outlining exactly how much it would cost and what square footage of panels you would need. As a general rule, solar panels can last up to 30 years, so it’s safe to assume you’ll be reaping the benefits of going solar for many years to come!
  • Next comes installation. While we may not have any experience installing our own solar power system, there are plenty of local installers who will do this for you. Before choosing an installer, ensure they are accredited by the Better Business Bureau and have positive customer reviews. It might be wise to ask if there is anywhere you can go to view their most recent work.
  • Once you’ve chosen your installer, it’s time to negotiate your installation price. Make sure this is handled before any paperwork is signed so that there are no surprises later on. It’s also intelligent to check the fine print and ensure that your system is equipped with a warranty and any other services you might need (like MPPT charge controllers).
  • The final step in going solar is receiving your incentive. Most cities offer some rebate or tax break for those who go solar, so check to see what your city or county has to offer before you get started.
  • Finally, take advantage of the advantages of clean energy now while getting ready for next summer.

Saving with Solar in Los Angeles

The typical solar panel cost in Los Angeles County, CA, is $2.68 per watt as of November 2021. Given a 5kW solar panel system, the average solar installation in Los Angeles County, CA costs between $11,390 and $15,410, with an average gross price of $13,400.

After considering the 26 percent Federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC) and other state and local solar incentives, the net cost of installing solar may be thousands of dollars lower.

Average Savings with Solar in LA

The total amount of money you’ll save each month by installing a solar panel system is determined by your house’s size, the size of your solar panel system, and how much energy you consume every day. However, it’s estimated that you can save $25,000 over 20 years by converting to solar in Los Angeles.

Paying for Solar Panels

Paying for solar panels is the biggest question that people will need to answer, and there are a few options to consider:

  • Financing
  • Leasing
  • PPA
  • Cash

If you own your home, financing is typically the best option. This makes paying for solar easy and convenient. In addition, property owners can take advantage of federal tax incentives such as the Investment Tax Credit (ITC). Owners can receive special rates from licensed energy companies that partner with reputable solar panel installers. The ITC currently allows homeowners who pay taxes to deduct 30 percent of the final cost of their system from their total taxable income at year’s end.

You may also want to consider purchasing a solar power system through a lease. This means you rent the equipment from a solar company and save a lot of money on electricity!

Some leases come with a monthly payment plan, while others require an upfront cost. Leasing is great for those who don’t have thousands of dollars to spend on solar panels or would rather not take out a loan for their new purchase.

Solar Power Purchase Agreements (PPA) is another option you can consider if you’re not ready to make the leap into buying your system yet or prefer long-term stability from a trusted provider. A PPA involves purchasing power from a selected solar provider through special agreements that last up to 20 years, allowing homeowners to support renewable energy without worrying about installation costs.

Cash is an excellent option for those who can pay in full and want a more streamlined experience. Solar companies generally have a team of experts available to help you through your purchase, so no matter which route you choose, going solar should be pretty simple!

Incentives for Going Solar in LA

Solar incentives in Los Angeles, like rebates and tax credits, are an essential part of the financial benefits of solar power. They assist the environment by reducing carbon emissions while also providing a financial return on investment. Furthermore, solar energy has gotten more affordable in recent years, thanks to these financial incentives, making it more accessible and cost-effective.

Rebates and Tax Credits

Solar panel rebates and tax credits are financial incentives available for purchasing or leasing solar panels. There is plenty of government tax credit and rebate programs that you can apply for as a resident of California. For example, Los Angeles County residents should check out the LA Department of Water and Power, LADWP Residential Solar Incentive Program, which offers “customers $2.50 per watt up to $5,000.”

The US government also gives out multiple federal tax incentives for solar in Los Angeles. These include immediate and deferred tax credits for energy production, including improving existing solar systems. Buying residential green power is also eligible for deductions which can be applied on top of these federal tax credits when filing income taxes at year’s end.

The Benefits of Going Solar

Solar panels are an excellent method to save money on your power bill while also benefiting the environment. As a result, you’re not only helping to reduce your costs in the near term, but you’re also reducing your carbon footprint. 

There are more clear win-wins than there are situations in which you may help both yourself and the planet at the same time—so go solar in LA today! Also, be sure to check out our articles on going solar in Sacramento and the Bay Area.