How Much Do Solar Panels Cost in Florida in 2024?

May 10, 2024

Considering its nickname, the Sunshine State, Florida is an excellent place to harness solar energy efficiently. With its ample sunlight and dedication to sustainable practices, more residents are exploring the option of installing solar panels for their homes and businesses.

In our blog post, we’ll provide a detailed overview of the common expenses related to solar panel installation for homes in Florida, including regional solar panel costs and installation fees. We’ll explain various factors influencing the total expenditure of photovoltaic solar panel setup and provide insights on cost-saving strategies.

Solar Panels in Florida: Solar Price

As of April 2024, the going rate for Florida solar incentives hits around $2.35 per watt, installation included. For a 5 kW setup, that’s roughly $11,739 without any perks, but you could see solar prices fluctuating between $9,978 and $13,500. Why? Factor in the federal tax credit, and the average cost takes a 30% dip.

Is Solar Worth It in Florida?

Despite the Florida solar sticker shock, solar expenses have been on a downward spiral nationwide for quite some time. The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) reports a 53% plunge in the cost of solar panels in the “Sunshine” State over the past decade alone.

With solar tech marching forward and more local production hubs springing up, solar panel costs will keep sliding. Although we can’t look into a crystal ball, the outlook suggests solar gear in Florida will likely be cheaper in the next five to ten years. The pace might be different at times, though.

Still, pulling the trigger on solar energy in Florida is a savvy move. Most solar setups pay for themselves in roughly a decade. Undoubtedly, you might snag a bargain later, but getting in on the action now means making huge energy savings right at the same time.

In addition, these days, Florida’s electricity rates are climbing higher. Blame it on inflation, challenges with sourcing fossil fuel, and transmission obstacles. By “hopping on the solar train” now, you are likely to avoid those rising rates and score big by locking in a sweet per-kilowatt-hour (kWh) rate for your system’s lifespan. Let’s discover how much energy and money you could accrue by embracing solar in Florida today.

Factors Impacting the Cost of Solar Panels in Florida

 A house with installed solar panels on the roof in the village.

Various factors contribute to the cost of going solar in Florida, each explained in more detail below.

Size of the Solar Panels System

It’s pretty straightforward: bigger solar setups mean larger bills. We measure the expense in cost per watt ($/W) to make it easier for you to size up quotes, smoothing over any slight differences in system size.

So, while a 5 kW setup sets you back roughly $11,739 in Florida, go ahead and double the size, and you’re looking at the average cost for solar panels of 10 kW capacity. Sure, the price tag climbs, however, the larger the bill, the bigger the credit you’ll receive from the state.

Here’s a breakdown of the average cost of solar panels in Florida based on the system size:

System SizeSystem CostSystem Cost (ITC)
3 kW$7,044$4,930
4 kW$9,391$6,574
5 kW$11,739$8,217
6 kW$14,087$9,861
7 kW$16,435$11,504
8 kW$18,783$13,148
9 kW$21,131$14,791
10 kW$23,478$16,435

Solar Panel Type

Monocrystalline solar panels have gained popularity for being top-notch in the solar panel world because of their sky-high efficiency rates. However, be ready to splash out because they come with the heftiest price tag.

If you’re trying to save money where possible, polycrystalline panels might be more suitable. They’re cheaper than monocrystalline ones, although they may not achieve the same level of efficiency.

What about thin-film panels? Well, they’re popular among budget-conscious consumers due to their lower average cost, making them ideal for smaller solar projects like RVs or sheds. However, thin-film panels may not offer the highest efficiency compared to other types of panels.

Solar System Installation Costs

In Florida, diving into solar power isn’t just about buying the panels. You’ve got to foot the bill for installation, various permits, and ensuring compliance with safety standards through inspections. These extra fees usually account for up to 20% of the whole bill, making a big splash in the total investment needed for the solar switch in Florida.

Nevertheless, there are some tricks to cut down on initial costs when installing solar panels in Florida. We’ll discuss it in the next section.

Taxes on Solar Energy

When buying solar panels in Florida, buying solar panels means paying sales tax upfront and possibly facing higher property taxes as your home’s value increases with the addition of solar panels. No worries — Florida gives breaks on taxes to people who go solar, showing they’re serious about pushing renewable energy.

Type of a Roof

Depending on your roof type, installers might require extra gear to finish the job. The amount of roof space you have also determines how big and how many panels they can put up. Overall, it impacts solar panels cost in Florida.

In addition to these factors, think about how you’ll cover the solar panels cost. Opting for a long-term payment plan like a solar loan will keep your monthly bills manageable, but you’ll end up shelling out more in the long run because of interest rates. Therefore, paying upfront for the system is the smartest way to dodge extra interest. However, it means laying down a hefty sum of money right off the bat for green solar energy in Florida.

How to Cut the Cost of Solar Panels in Florida?

Florida folks have access to a bunch of solar perks. Firstly, there’s a property tax exemption, saving you from extra expenses due to the added value of your new solar setup. Plus, some utility companies or local authorities may offer one-time credits or rebates.

A businessman's hand holding money against solar panel installation.

Check out your local government or utility company website for the lowdown, or hop over to the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE).

Florida Solar Incentives and Bonuses

Here’s the scoop on Florida solar incentives:

Sales Tax Exemption for Solar and CHPThis one’s a winner — you won’t be paying sales or use tax for your solar system. It’s been the permanent rule in Florida since 2005.
Property Tax Break for Renewable Energy GearSay goodbye to property tax woes with this program. Homeowners won’t have to pay property tax on new residential solar setups, inverters, and PV modules. Nonresidential systems get an 80% tax break. This deal lasts until Dec. 31, 2037, and Florida solar panels owners can qualify.
Federal Solar Tax CreditDon’t forget about Uncle Sam’s helping hand! This credit slices off 30% of your solar panel cost from your taxes. However, it only applies to new systems and can only be used once per household. The rate will decrease to 26% by 2033.

Important! To be eligible for these perks, you’ve got to be an owner of your solar panel setup. Whether you’ve covered the cost of solar panels upfront or opted for a solar loan, it’s all good. However, if you’re considering a solar lease, where you rent the system for a while, you can’t qualify for these Florida solar incentives.

Nowadays, some solar companies may pitch power purchase agreements (PPAs), where you only pay for the solar power you consume. However, PPAs are a no-go for solar panels in Florida.

Florida Net Metering

Net metering programs sweeten the deal by letting homeowners sell their extra power back to the grid. The credits you accumulate with time can either chip away at your future electric bills or get cashed out at the end of the year, depending on the program. Surely, it reduces the overall solar panel cost you need to finance.

Back in 2008, the Florida Public Service Commission adopted its current net metering program. If you’re under the umbrella of one of the state’s Investor Owned Utilities (IOUs), you’re in luck. See the list below:

  • Duke Energy Florida
  • Florida Power & Light (FPL)
  • Florida Public Utilities Corporation
  • Tampa Electric Company (TECO)

These companies, powering nearly 80% of the state, follow the state’s net metering playbook. Each month, customers get credit for any extra solar energy in Florida they pump into the grid based on their provider’s retail electricity rate. That credit gets tagged onto the next month’s bill, and any leftovers at year-end get a payout, though at a lower rate. Thus, the average monthly electric bill with solar panels gets even lower together with solar panel cost.

The other 20% of Florida’s power comes from publicly-owned municipal and rural co-ops, each with its own approach to net metering. They might offer different payouts, policies, and rules. So, if you’re plugged into one of these smaller co-ops, it’s wise to check in with them for the lowdown on net metering.

Important! Applying for a net metering program is voluntary for solar panel owners. Instead, you can install a solar battery. This device lets you collect surplus energy for future use during rainy and cloudy days, power outages, or when your system’s solar energy production is reduced due to unfavorable weather conditions.

True Cost of Solar Panels | DON’T WASTE YOUR MONEY

PACE Financing

PACE financing, available in Florida, offers homeowners an alternative route if they’re not keen on paying their solar panel cost upfront. If you’re up to date on your taxes and mortgage payments and aren’t tangled up in bankruptcy proceedings, PACE might just be the ticket for you!

With PACE, it’s like taking out a loan to cover the cost of solar panels. But instead of paying back the loan directly, you repay it through an increase in your property taxes. Apart from that, PACE isn’t limited to just solar panel cost — it can fund a range of energy-efficient upgrades for your home. Plus, if you decide to move before settling the balance, the loan can be transferred to the new owner.

However, there are some trade-offs to consider:

  1. PACE financing puts a lien on your property and may come with higher interest rates compared to other options like a Home Equity Line of Credit.
  2. Some people raise concerns about it being a bit rough on those with lower credit scores and incomes.

While PACE might suit your situation, many experts recommend exploring traditional financing routes, like a bank loan or a solar loan company.

To hop on the PACE bandwagon in Florida, you’ve got a couple of options. Reach out to your local county to inquire about available PACE programs, or contact a solar company for assistance, as they can guide you through the process and handle the paperwork.

Best Solar Companies in Florida

A worker installing photovoltaic solar panels on the house.

For Florida residents, we suggest SunPower due to its diverse array of solar offerings, strong customer support options, and robust system performance warranty. Given Florida’s reputation for ample sunshine, it’s a prime spot for solar panel installations. Moreover, incorporating energy storage into your solar setup can offer backup power, especially beneficial during the state’s hurricane-prone seasons.

We’ve meticulously researched both national and local solar companies, evaluating product offerings, customer feedback, pricing structures, and other critical aspects. As a result, we’ve identified the best solar companies in Florida and will guide you on selecting the ideal installer to suit your specific requirements.

SunPower

Since 1985, SunPower has been at the forefront of pioneering solar technology. With an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), SunPower boasts accreditation and a strong reputation. In our review of customer feedback, many homeowners lauded the exceptional performance of SunPower systems, highlighting immediate energy savings on solar panel costs.

Pros:

  • Tailored systems crafted with in-house components
  • Comprehensive 25-year warranty, along with performance assurance
  • In-house options for solar storage and electric vehicle (EV) enhancements

Cons:

  • Coverage differs based on a ZIP code within the state
  • Solar prices may be above average
  • Limited selection of panels, components, or batteries

Blue Raven

Blue Raven Solar is renowned for its stellar reputation of reliable Florida solar panels. The company is accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and holds an impressive A+ rating. Customers commended the professional customer service team and knowledgeable installers, although some cautioned against the assertive sales tactics.

Pros:

  • New customers enjoy 18 months of complimentary solar energy
  • Available in-house financing options, bypassing the need for third-party lenders
  • Regarded as one of the most reputable solar companies in the field

Cons:

  • Limited two-year power guarantee
  • Only two payment options offered
  • Workmanship warranty spans just 10 years

SunRun

Sunrun presents two leasing alternatives for homeowners who prefer not to own a solar system. Both plans come with extensive 25-year coverage and minimal upfront costs. Sunrun holds an A+ accreditation with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and maintains positive ratings.

Pros:

  • Enhanced insurance coverage for theft or damages
  • Options for EV chargers and additional batteries
  • Various financing choices, including two leasing plans

Cons:

Palmetto

Palmetto delivers a wide array of solar services, ranging from comprehensive protection plans to pest control. It boasts some of the most efficient residential solar panels, accompanied by a 25-year system performance warranty and ongoing customer support accessible through its app.

The company’s dedication to customer service is maintained with its availability via phone, email, and online chat, along with an online service request platform and a repository of troubleshooting resources. Palmetto Solar holds BBB accreditation and boasts an A+ rating.

Pros:

  • Provides a tiered system protection plan
  • Offers an online savings calculator for estimating ROI
  • Includes a 25-year warranty for panel output

Cons:

  • Imposes a monthly fee for active system monitoring
  • Does not offer complimentary energy consultations
  • Lacks leasing or PPA financing options

How Much Can You Save by Harnessing Florida Solar Power?

Putting up a correctly sized renewable energy setup can wipe out your entire electricity bill. For the typical Floridian, that’s around $150 a month, which is in your pocket. If we multiply the sum by the average solar panel’s lifespan, it’ll total nearly $50,000 saved.

However, that’s just an average estimate. If your monthly electricity tab surpasses $150, consider adding extra solar panels to cover the entire cost and maximize savings. Your savings will hinge on a bunch of factors, like solar panel cost, your usual electric bill, and how many panels you’ve installed.

Florida Solar Power: A Bright Investment Opportunity

When it comes to solar in Florida, it’s a real investment. With fantastic perks, a rock-solid net metering setup, and affordable installation rates, going solar in Florida has never been more wallet-friendly!

The advantages of solar energy in Florida are abundant. The 30% solar tax credit chops down installation expenses significantly. Solar power trims your energy bills, leaving more cash in your pocket. Moreover, a solar setup increases your home’s value. Finally, nature benefits from people going green and valuing natural resources.

Jed Hilton
Jed Hilton

Jed Hilton, our Founder and CEO, has over a decade of experience in the solar industry. His innovative leadership and expertise in solar technologies guide our company's vision and strategy.

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