Should You Go Solar? (And How To)

Going solar has become a bit of a buzzword; everyone, including large corporations, has been jumping on the bandwagon. Going with solar power can reduce the carbon footprint. But is it worth it?

Before we look at whether or not solar power is worth the investment, let’s look at the benefits.

  • It will reduce your electricity bill. If you go completely solar it will eliminate it completely, freeing up monthly cash flow.
  • You won’t have to deal with annual rising energy costs or power cuts.
  • Solar increases your property value.
  • Your carbon footprint is reduced.
  • It provides a great return on investment.

The benefits of going solar are convincing, but there are a few things to consider before taking the plunge.


The location of your home will impact your decision whether or not to get solar. Even if you live in a sunny state, if your home is surrounded by trees or does not get enough sun every day, it may not be worth it to get solar panels.

Your Roof

You’ll also need to determine if you have the space for solar panels. The panels need to sit somewhere and if they can’t go on your roof, is there a safe space they can be installed that will get enough sunlight?

If your roof is too steep or faces the wrong direction, you won’t be able to install panels. A solar installer or a roofer will be able to tell you if your roof is suitable or not.

Types of Solar Panels

There are different types of solar panels; be clear on which type will work for your home. Photovoltaic panels are the most common type; they use solar cells to convert sunlight into electricity. Solar thermal panels use mirrors to concentrate sunlight; these panels are best used for water heating.

Permits and Taxes

Before you can install solar panels, you’ll need to obtain the necessary permits. These vary from state to state so check with your city. Solar tax incentives are available at both the federal and state levels. Find out about these rebates and take advantage of them.

Understand Your Energy Consumption

It’s important to know how much energy your home is currently consuming so that you can make sure you install enough solar panels to be able to run your home efficiently.

Consider the Costs

Installing solar is an initial cost outlay; depending on the size of your home and your energy requirements it can be a large investment. Get a few quotes before making your final decision and speak to a few people to ask their opinion and make sure you have considered all of the costs involved so that you don’t get any surprises once installation starts.

Installing solar is a great way to “go green” and take your home off the grid, but it’s not a practical solution for every home. Before making your final decision consider where your home is located, what your energy consumption needs are as well as the initial investment cost.

-Laura LeRoux

Photo: Pixabay

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