Green energy becomes more popular and affordable every year but installing a renewable energy system in your home is still a big decision. You may be unsure if switching to renewable energy is worth the cost and effort. However, there are many advantages to equipping your home with clean energy. Here are five ways you can benefit from using green or renewable energy in your home:
Reduce Your Environmental Impact
Humans collectively have a major impact on the environment, and anything you can do to reduce your carbon footprint helps. Fossil fuels like natural gas and coal are large contributors to climate change, so opting instead for green energy reduces your environmental impact and sets a good example for your community.
Renewable energy is also much better for public health than fossil fuels. Coal and natural gas both produce pollution that can lead to a wide variety of health problems, including breathing issues, heart attacks, and cancer. Clean energy sources, such as wind and solar power, don’t create this harmful pollution. By powering your home with renewable energy, you can help reduce pollution and improve public health.
Secure Your Energy Source
Fossil fuel energy sources can have a wide variety of problems that may interrupt your energy supply. If there’s a shortage of water, a broken generator, or another issue with the utility company or the distribution system, you may go hours or even days without power. The risk of an outage when you have renewable energy is much lower.
You’ll also see more stability in the cost of your energy. Fossil fuels are finite resources, so their prices are always fluctuating. If you rely on traditional energy sources like coal and natural gas, you may experience unexpected increases in your bill. If you use renewable energy, your monthly cost will likely be more stable.
Installing a renewable energy source may be an expensive one-time cost, but you’ll save money in the long run. Renewable energy is much cheaper to produce than power from fossil fuels, so you can end up with significant savings after just a few years. Some people who use green energy consistently have an energy bill of $0 because they trade their excess energy with the utility company for a credit on their bill.
It costs about $50 to create one megawatt-hour of solar power as compared to $102 to produce the same megawatt-hour with a coal. Renewable energy also gets cheaper every year while fossil fuels are becoming more expensive.
Earn Tax Credits
Not only will you save money on your utility bill by switching to renewable energy, but you can also earn a tax credit. This federal tax credit is specifically for solar panels and is worth 30 percent of the total cost of your system, which includes the installation fees. For example, if you spend $10,000 total on your solar panels and on the installation, your tax bill can be reduced by $3,000.
There is no limit to how many times you can claim this tax credit. Since it’s worth 30 percent of your solar panel costs, you could potentially make up the entire cost of your solar panel system in tax credits after just a few years.
However, you should keep in mind that the tax credit will be reduced to 26 percent in 2020 and 22 percent in 2021. In 2022, the federal government plans to get rid of the tax credit entirely for residential homes. If you’re considering installing solar panels, it may be better to install them soon and take advantage of the tax credits before they’re phased out.
Increase the Value of Your Home
Plenty of homeowners are interested in renewable energy, but they don’t want to spend the time or effort researching and installing a system. They’re likely willing to pay extra for a home that already has a renewable energy system, though. According to the Department of Energy, many home buyers will pay an extra $15,000 on a home that’s equipped with solar panels. Even if you switch to renewable energy and then sell your home, you can earn back the money you spent because you increased the home’s value.
Installing a renewable energy system is a great way to save money, stabilize your energy source, and reduce your carbon footprint. Renewable energy is cheaper and more accessible than ever, and now is the perfect time to make the switch.
December 14, 2018