Electricity prices in Mississippi are rising. You may be able to protect yourself with an investment in solar panels.
The quest for energy independence may be aided by solar panels in the Magnolia State.
In October 2022, the state's rates increased by almost 14% from the previous year. Electricity prices will continue to fluctuate based on the demand and availability of fossil fuels. Installing solar panels can reduce or even replace your utility bill and protect you from the unpredictable energy market.
After your solar system's payback period, or the time it takes to see a return on investment, you can save thousands on your energy bills. The cost of solar has decreased by 52% in the last 10 years and incentives are available to reduce the price further.
Can solar panels save you money?
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Here's a look at the costs, incentives and companies offering solar panels in Mississippi.
Here's a look at the average cash price for a 5-kilowatt system before factoring in tax credits incentives, according to data from FindEnergy.com.
|System size (kW)||Price per watt||Total cost|
Paying for solar upfront can be a large investment. While a cash purchase may be the quickest way to get a return on investment, other payment options are available with lower or no upfront costs. Here's a look at some options.
Cash: Cash allows you to avoid paying financing costs and interest. Not ready for solar yet? Consider saving up for your future solar panels in a high-yield savings account.
Solar loans: These loans, typically offered by your solar installer, are another option that is still eligible for the federal tax credit. Keep in mind that interest and fees can lead to higher costs over time.
Other loans: You don't have to borrow money from your solar company or the partner they recommend. You can also pay for solar panels -- and get the full federal tax credit -- with loans from banks and other lenders. That includes home equity loans and home equity lines of credit, which are secured by your home. Be careful: If you don't pay back a home equity loan or HELOC, your lender can foreclose.
Leasing and other options: Solar leases and power purchase agreements offer affordable ways to use solar energy without owning or maintaining the panels. While owning may lead to more long-term savings, solar leases and PPAs can result in lower energy bills since you are not paying for electricity from the grid. In a solar lease, you pay the solar company, which installs and owns the panels, a fixed monthly price. For PPAs, you pay a rate based on the amount of electricity used.
Mississippi has no state-specific solar incentives such as property tax exemptions, but residents can take advantage of the federal solar tax credit. The 30% residential clean energy credit applies to solar systems purchased from 2022 through 2032. The following table details the solar tax credit and net metering in Mississippi.
|Net metering||The process of selling excess power generated from your solar panels back to the utility company. The Mississippi Public Service Commission sets the compensation rate.|
|Residential clean energy credit||A tax credit on your next filed return for 30% of the total cost of a solar system. The credit lowers to 26% in 2033 and 22% in 2034, expiring in 2034.|
There are not many residential solar companies to choose from in Mississippi. The following companies, identified by our research and our list of the top national solar companies, includes two national brands and one local company. We recommend receiving quotes from multiple installers to compare prices and warranties.
As a nationwide company headquartered in Florida, ADT Solar provides solar panel installations in Mississippi and 21 other US states. Every installation is backed with ADT's solar guarantee, which includes a 25-year labor and production warranty, a free home energy audit and access to roof replacement experts. In addition, the solar panels and Enphase microinverters come with a 25-year manufacturer warranty. ADT Solar also offers a price protection guarantee.
Mississippi Solar has served commercial and residential customers since 2009. The company installs REC Solar panels with a 25-year performance and product guarantee. In addition, Mississippi Solar backs its services with a five-year quality of work warranty, which is lower than most competitors. The company includes lifetime monitoring to ensure the system performs efficiently.
One of the largest solar companies in the nation is SunPower Solar. Listed as CNET's best solar company, SunPower's products are backed with a 25-year warranty for the products, production and quality of work. SunPower has a strong reputation for quality products.
Going solar is a big, expensive proposition. Consider the following before deciding if solar is right for you.
|Does your homeowner's insurance cover solar panels?||Contact your home insurance company to make updates if your current policy does not include solar panels.|
|Is your home in the best location?||Solar panels still generate energy in shaded areas but perform best with at least four hours of direct sunlight daily.|
|Are you an HOA member?||If you are part of a homeowners or other neighborhood association, there may be rules or restrictions for solar panels. Check with your association for guidelines.|
|How old is your roof?||Old or damaged roofs require repair before installation. Sturdy roofs help ensure your panels won't need removing during the lifetime of your system. Repairs should be factored into your budget.|
|Do you rent your home?||Community solar programs are available for renters through subscription-style services.|
|Who completes the process?||Inquire with your selected solar company about their installation process to determine if they complete all of the work in-house or hire subcontractors. Ensure you have a list of who to contact throughout the process.|
|Have you received multiple estimates?||Getting price quotes from multiple companies can help you determine which company fits your budget.|
|What is the company's warranty?||Compare the length and terms for solar company warranties for what potential maintenance and protection is covered.|
The payback period for your system depends on your home's energy usage and total system cost. The average payback period is six to 12 years, according to experts we talked to.
Solar panel production warranties from manufacturers usually last 25 years, but the panels are expected to last much longer. Over time the power output will decrease, just as with any technology, but higher-quality materials tend to have a longer lifespan than cheap options.
Yes. Installing solar panels can save money on energy bills and reduce the financial impact of rising electricity rates. Financial incentives and financing options are available to make solar more affordable.