Many people invest in solar panels to make their homes a little more eco-friendly. Of course, on top of the carbon-emission savings, many homeowners are also looking to save a bit of money on their electricity bill, too. Understandably, before making such a big investment, many people want to know that they will actually save some money in the long run. Otherwise, many people may struggle to see the real benefits of installing solar panels. With so many questions surrounding the effectiveness of solar energy, will they actually save us money on our utility bills?
The going rate
To understand how much you will benefit in the long run, it helps to know how much an installation of solar panels generally costs. The cost nowadays is just over £6,000; this is actually quite a significant reduction compared to how much they used to cost. The average cost of solar panels was around £4-6,000 more on top of that price. Now that the Feed-in-Tariff has ended, there are a set number of ways in which you can start to make your money back.
- Generating electricity: as you might expect, the energy that is generated from your solar panels can be used to power your home. This may knock around £85-£220 off of your electricity bill each year (based on a four kWp system). How effective this is will depend on a number of factors: the size of the solar panel system you have, the volume of electricity your home consumes and how frequently you are at home to use up the electricity. In the long run, you can earn & save up to £38,000 by installing your solar panels.
- Selling back to the grid: the Feed-in-Tariff has unfortunately ended, but the government has, however, set up a new scheme under the Smart Export Guarantee to let customers of the six biggest energy companies sell their unused energy back to the grid. It’s said that it will be a little more generous than the Feed-in-Tariff, but if you are curious, then contacting Ofgem is a helpful first step to make.
Beat the bills
If we look to the future, it’s possible to see how solar panels could save us even more on our electricity bills. It’s been found that there’s an annual increase of around 6.92% on our energy bills as a whole. This equates to £1 of electricity in 2020, costing around £2.73 in just 15 years down the road. By using solar energy to power your home, and earn some money by selling it back to the grid, you could help to stop the effects of this price inflation.