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Wednesday, September 18 2019 @ 07:50 pm EDT

Understanding the NYSERDA Solar Rebate Program

Chances are you've never heard of NYSERDA. They are the New York State Energy Resource and Development Authority. From their website; "NYSERDA offers objective information and analysis, innovative programs, technical expertise, and support to help New Yorkers increase energy efficiency, save money, use renewable energy, and reduce reliance on fossil fuels. A public benefit corporation, NYSERDA has been advancing energy solutions and working to protect the environment since 1975."

The NY-Sun Program: NYSERDA has many different programs for different types of applications for things like electric vehicles, high efficiency air source heat pumps, improving home insulation, and efficiency upgrades. For the purposes of this article I'll be focusing on the NY-Sun Program, which provides incentives to residential solar systems.

How NYSERDA Gets Funded: If you look closely at your electricity bill, you will see you are paying an "SBC charge" every month. SBC stands for "Systems Benefit Charge" - and you won't know what that is until you flip the bill over and read the back. There you will see "The System Benefits charge recovers costs associated with clean energy activities conducted by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA)." This is how NYSERDA gets the millions of dollars it hands out every year - from you. You can get a large chunk of that money back if you go solar. If you don't go solar, isn't it nice to know you're paying everyone else to?

How Is It Calculated: There's a set amount of money dedicated to the NY-Sun Program, and it's being "claimed" every time a new solar installation goes up. We are currently in Block 8 for the Orange and Rockland area. Block 8 was for a maximum of 75,000 kw of installed solar systems. Block 8 opened on 9/22/2017. There were seven earlier blocks that have opened and closed, with each block allowing for a decreasing amount of funding. Thus far 61,723 kw have been claimed in Block 8, with 13,276 kw remaining to be claimed. The current block provides for 35 cents per kw installed. The average system in our area is about 8 kw. So 8,000 x .35 = $2,800. That money goes straight to the installer. It basically goes towards covering or offsetting the cost of installation, and it's a big reason why you can go solar in NY state without having to pay any money out of pocket.

Decreasing Soon: Once Block 8 is filled, then Block 9 will open and the incentive will drop to 20 cents per kw installed. So with the example above: 8,000 x .20 = $1,600 so the average homeowner stands to lose out on $1,200 in NYSERDA incentive money if you hold off on going solar. I try to inform my customers to help them save money on solar. I know it sounds like a "buy now, before it's too late" sales pitch, but I don't make the rules. In any case, it's real. The Federal Solar Tax Incentive is being phased down and out as well, so there's another reason to ACT NOW! (Did you notice the subtle "call to action" there?)

Want To Save Thousands Of Dollars? Then give me a call or text (845) 800-6925. You can also send me an email.

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