Colorado Solar Policies: Past, Present, and Future
Colorado has not been idle when it comes to solar policy. The state was the first to institute a renewable energy portfolio by popular approval. It also has strong net metering policies and rebates.
The Current State of Colorado Solar Policies
While Colorado doesn’t have as many strong policies as states like New Jersey or Florida, it still has a slate of solar incentives that can save homeowners hundreds or thousands of dollars.
Colorado Tax Exemptions for Solar
First off, Colorado exempts solar installations from two different types of taxes: sales taxes on solar products and property tax increases from your installation.
Colorado Solar Sales Tax Exemptions
The Sales and Use Tax Exemption for Renewable Energy Equipment waive state sales taxes on eligible solar equipment. Eligible equipment includes your solar panels themselves, the racking system, and your inverter. However, the tax exemption does not cover solar storage, so your battery backup will be full price.
Colorado Property Tax Exemptions
The Property Tax Exemption for Residential Renewable Energy Equipment is a bit more comprehensive than the sales tax exemption. While the sales tax exemption rules out battery backup, the property tax exemption includes them — as long as they’re connected to your solar installation. Everything that goes into your solar installation will not count for property valuation purposes.
Colorado Utility-Level Solar Rebates
One of the main incentives available to Colorado solar homeowners are rebates offered by your local utility. Rebates, unlike tax credits or exemptions, can get cash right back into your pocket.
Holy Cross Energy Solar Rebates
Holy Cross Energy has several incentives available to its customers. They offer rebates on a kW basis for new residential solar energy systems. It’s estimated that the average solar installation that qualifies for Holy Cross rebates will end up saving more than $4,000.
Energy Smart Solar Rebates
Energy Smart offers rebates on several energy-efficient products, including solar installations. The amount varies depending on where you live in Colorado. They can range anywhere from a few hundred dollars to several thousand. Potential solar homeowners who are also Energy Smart customers owe it to themselves to read more about Energy Smart’s rebates.
Net Metering in Colorado
The last incentive that Coloradans can benefit from is net metering. Net metering is where the excess energy that your solar installation produces during the day is shipped to the grid. You will then get credited on your power bill for the energy.
Net metering is one of the main ways for homeowners to save money on their installation. While the net metering rate will vary based on your utility company and location, it is still a valuable part of your solar savings. Net metering is best when paired with battery backup like the Tesla Powerwall. Consider adding a solar battery to your installation for the most savings.