Tourists visiting Orlando are more and more seeing a sight different than simply cartoon mice: photo voltaic panels stacked on rooftops.

The Central Florida metropolis has set a objective of 100% clear and renewable vitality sources by 2050. Meanwhile, there are a lot of clear vitality initiatives, together with personal firms transferring towards elevated photo voltaic utilization. Going photo voltaic is an interesting alternative within the aptly named Sunshine State: Florida ranks fourth general for photo voltaic vitality potential, whereas the common electrical energy value was $167.55 in October 2023.

The federal tax credit score bolstered by the Inflation Reduction Act offers a 30% rebate on photo voltaic panel methods for any US resident, however there are some state-level incentives that’ll additionally assist make photo voltaic panels extra reasonably priced in Florida. Solar panel methods are exempt from property and gross sales taxes throughout the Sunshine State, and a internet metering coverage allows you to ship your extra vitality to the grid with a purpose to get credit in your invoice.

If you do discover the potential for photo voltaic vitality, there are photo voltaic prices and incentives to contemplate earlier than making the choice. But earlier than breaking these down, here’s a checklist of one of the best photo voltaic installers working inside Orlando.

Best nationwide photo voltaic panel firms in Orlando

Palmetto Solar

Best general

Solar panels are sometimes low upkeep gear, however they’re additionally unfamiliar. If you wish to reap the advantages of photo voltaic however can have a bit extra peace of thoughts if another person is ensuring it is working, Palmetto could be a superb match for you. Just keep in mind so as to add the price of Palmetto’s monitoring service in to your payback interval calculations.

SunPower Solar

Best photo voltaic panels

If you are on the lookout for top-of-the-line photo voltaic panels, SunPower is your most suitable option. But do not write it off in the event you’re on the lookout for a much less flashy set up that can get the job finished. This 12 months it began putting in Qcells panels, which ought to make an set up from the longest-tenured firm on our checklist accessible to extra individuals.


Whole house strategy

Elevation’s give attention to your own home’s vitality effectivity is not the norm within the trade. If you are planning on addressing vitality effectivity first, working with Elevation means that you can preserve the entire course of with one firm. Elevation’s photo voltaic gear comes from well-established and well-regarded firms. Elevation’s warranties on workmanship and weatherization might be a bit longer.

Freedom Forever

Best for money prospects

Include Freedom Forever in your search if you’d like the backing of a nationwide firm that installs all kinds of the most well-liked photo voltaic gear accessible. Freedom Forever additionally extends a few merchandise that take a number of the ache and threat out of going photo voltaic, like a manufacturing assure and an escrow possibility with money purchases. Online critiques say buyer satisfaction has been low of late, although the corporate says that is altering.

Tesla Solar

Most reasonably priced

Tesla’s photo voltaic department appears to be the least cherished of Elon Musk’s ventures. Even Tesla’s Solar Roof appears to get extra love.

If worth is the factor you will not budge on, take into account Tesla. By all accounts, Tesla installs high quality panels and makes the closest factor there’s to a family title in photo voltaic storage: the Powerwall.

Where you would possibly miss out is customer support. Discussion on-line appears to counsel Tesla’s service is a little bit of a chance.

Momentum Solar

All in-house installers

Momentum installs in 11 states with out utilizing subcontractors. While utilizing in-house installers does not assure a greater expertise, it does counsel you are prone to get a extra uniform expertise from Momentum. The incontrovertible fact that Momentum backs its installations with a 25-year workmanship guarantee hints at a powerful perception in its crews’ potential. If Momentum is a part of your search, take into account the warranties towards leaks that different firms provide. Momentum’s is 5 years, which is not the finest.

Local photo voltaic panel firms in Orlando

Panasun Solar affords residential photo voltaic, business photo voltaic and battery backup providers. It affords three varieties of fee plans together with purchases and leases. The firm has an A+ plus score from the Better Business Bureau.

Sunbright Solar boasts of finishing 2,500 initiatives since its launch in 2020. It has an A+ score from the BBB. 

How to find out which photo voltaic firm is finest for me

“Orlando is without doubt one of the most concentrated areas for photo voltaic generally,” mentioned Raina Greenfest, a civil engineer and Florida Solar Energy Industries Association board member who runs a photo voltaic consultancy known as Raina or Shine. Greenfest encourages thorough vetting of potential contractors and asking many questions earlier than you progress ahead with set up.

There are some ways to be sure you’re working with a good photo voltaic installer. Companies which can be licensed by NABCEP are licensed professionals. It’s additionally a good suggestion to verify the Better Business Bureau and get critiques from Google and Yelp to see what individuals are saying a few given installer. You may even verify together with your neighbors who’ve put in photo voltaic panel methods to see what their opinions are.

“They ought to evaluate apples to apples and who is definitely performing the work,” Greenfest mentioned. “If a house owner has a query they will wish to have the flexibility to speak to any person and get solutions. It is actually essential they’re working with a good contractor.”

Additionally, it is essential to not rush the method when on the lookout for a photo voltaic installer. This is an costly buy, and it is all the time essential to be sure you have all of the essential data earlier than speeding into such an enormous monetary determination. Make positive to get bids from at the least a handful of set up firms to weigh your choices earlier than deciding to maneuver ahead with one in all them.

Cost of photo voltaic panels in Orlando

One of the most important deciding components in selecting to go photo voltaic is the associated fee. Throughout the state of Florida, photo voltaic prices have come down 42% over the previous 10 years, in line with the Solar Energy Industries Association. 

“The market is saturated with product in the intervening time, which wasn’t the case awhile again,” Greenfest mentioned. “You have installers able to go and rates of interest are dropping in order that mixture makes it a really viable possibility.”

Other value components embody the kind of panel chosen for the set up and the kind of roof you’ve gotten. Anyone with a roof 20 years or older might wish to take into account changing the roof first earlier than going photo voltaic, in line with Greenfest.

You may also need to try house home equipment to ensure they’re vitality environment friendly and scale back your consumption earlier than including photo voltaic panels. That may result in you needing fewer panels and saving cash.

Here’s a have a look at the common money worth for a typical photo voltaic panel system in Florida, earlier than factoring in tax credit and incentives, in line with knowledge from Remember, if you are going to add photo voltaic batteries or different extra gear to your buy, your system could also be considerably costlier.

Average value of photo voltaic panels in Florida

Typical system measurement (kW)Price per wattTotal put in valueCost after 30% federal tax credit score
National common8.6$3.67$31,558$22,091

Our interactive map under shows the common whole money worth, value per watt and typical system measurement for a photo voltaic panel system in your state, in line with knowledge from Prices proven do not account for rebates from tax credit or state incentives. Certain states haven’t any DiscoverEnergy photo voltaic knowledge and are grayed out on the map.

Orlando photo voltaic panels incentives and rebates

The greatest monetary incentive for going photo voltaic in Orlando is the federal photo voltaic tax credit score, often known as the residential clear vitality credit score, which can pay you again for as much as 30% of the set up prices.

The state of Florida does not provide tax credit or rebates for set up, however there are internet metering applications and each property tax and photo voltaic gross sales tax exemptions.

Florida photo voltaic panel incentives

Residential clear vitality credit scoreThis federal tax credit score offers as much as 30% of the price of a photo voltaic panel set up again in your taxes the next 12 months.
Net meteringNet metering means that you can promote the vitality generated by your photo voltaic panels however not used at your own home again to the grid for credit in your energy invoice.
Property tax exemptionThe worth of a photo voltaic panel set up is exempt from property tax assessments.
Sales tax exemptionSolar panels and sure gear are exempt from Florida’s gross sales tax.

How to pay for photo voltaic panels in Orlando

While energy buy agreements usually are not accessible in Florida, you do have a number of choices to pay for photo voltaic panel set up.

Cash: While the preliminary set up prices might be prohibitive, in case you have the funds accessible to do an easy buy, which eliminates curiosity and costs related to a possible mortgage and the associated fee financial savings will begin straight away.

Solar mortgage: Generally provided by the installer, there are solar-specific loans accessible if you wish to finance the set up over time.

Home fairness mortgage: Home fairness loans or HELOCs are another choice for you and since they’re tied into collateral (your own home), you would possibly be capable of get a superb rate of interest. But they’ll include a prolonged appraisal course of, and in the event you fail to repay the mortgage, you could possibly lose your own home.

Personal mortgage: A private mortgage via a monetary establishment is one other route, however they have a tendency to come back with greater rates of interest. 

Solar lease: If you’ve gotten a photo voltaic lease, you make a month-to-month fee to a photo voltaic panel firm to have the panels on your own home, however you don’t personal them. In this case, you are not eligible for the federal tax credit and you do not truly personal the system.

Other set up components to bear in mind

In addition to the completely different financing strategies that you just want to bear in mind, there are a variety of things which may have an effect on your set up as properly:

Renting vs. proudly owning your own home: If you are renting a home and hope to buy a house comparatively quickly, the prices of putting in photo voltaic panels will not be well worth the funding. Also, the selection to get photo voltaic panels would finally be as much as the house owner — your landlord.

Cost vs. time: While photo voltaic panels will prevent cash in the long run, they’re very pricey to put in. If you are not planning to remain in your present house till the photo voltaic panels are worthwhile, it is most likely not value it to undergo with the set up.

Roof situation and angle: Not each roof can deal with the photo voltaic panel system required to energy essential family home equipment. Old roofs will possible should be changed, including to the overall prices of a photo voltaic panel set up. Additionally, the angle of your roof is extraordinarily essential — the solar must be hitting your panels throughout peak daylight hours. To guarantee that the daylight is hitting your photo voltaic panel system, verify in case your roof is constructed at an angle conducive to solar energy era.

Insurance protection: Solar panels might be broken by excessive climate or different exterior forces. You ought to assessment your house owner’s insurance coverage coverage to find out if the panels could be lined and make contact with your insurance coverage firm to inform them.

Homeowners affiliation laws: While Florida has legal guidelines limiting how owners associations can prohibit photo voltaic panels, you need to verify your HOA’s laws to see what their guidelines are.

How we discovered one of the best photo voltaic panel firms

The firms we listed above as “one of the best” are curated from CNET’s finest photo voltaic firms checklist. Companies making one of the best checklist are scored on the gear, warranties and customer support they provide. Then, we ensure that these suggestions can be found in your state. You can learn a full breakdown of how we assessment photo voltaic firms right here.

Companies listed underneath the native installers had been chosen in a much less rigorous method. We selected them as a result of they provided one thing distinctive or notable to prospects within the state, they appeared well-regarded by web reviewers or as a result of they had been one of many few installers we may discover data on within the state.

Whether we have accomplished a full assessment on an organization or not, it is all the time a good suggestion to get a number of quotes from completely different installers earlier than selecting an organization.

Orlando photo voltaic panel FAQs

What are the benefits of photo voltaic panels?

Solar panels are a good way to economize in the long run, and so they scale back carbon emissions from private vitality utilization. For an in depth checklist of execs and cons related to photo voltaic panel system set up, check out this text.

How lengthy does it take to repay photo voltaic panels?

Your photo voltaic payback interval will fluctuate relying on the dimensions of your photo voltaic panel system, whether or not you obtain and put in any extra gear, and the way a lot vitality you employ to energy your own home. This article may also help you calculate the photo voltaic payback interval on your private scenario.

Does Florida provide a state tax credit score for photo voltaic panels?

No, Florida doesn’t have a state-level photo voltaic tax credit score. All US residents are capable of declare the residential clear vitality credit score for a 30% rebate on the price of their photo voltaic panels and extra clear vitality house additions, although.

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