Save with solar in Everett, Massachusetts

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Everett, Massachusetts

Everett has a population of over 46,000 and is located just 4 miles north of Boston. The city supplies electricity to much of the surrounding area from the Mystic Generating Station, a natural gas power plant that has been operating since the early 20th century. With a nameplate capacity of 2002 megawatts (MW), it is the largest power plant in the state of Massachusetts.

In 2014, the Everett municipal government carried out a large-scale energy audit of its buildings, which helped identify various projects to reduce the energy footprint of the city:

  • Upgrading more than 8,000 lighting fixtures in the city to LED or high-efficiency fluorescent lamps, while deploying nearly 700 lighting control systems.
  • Installing energy management systems (EMS) for the city-owned buildings with the highest energy bills.
  • Improving heating and air conditioning efficiency by improving building elevators, upgrading boilers and chillers, and using variable speed controls for motors.
  • Installing solar panel systems for five schools in Everett, with a total capacity of more than 1,200 kilowatts (kW). The system is expected to yield more than $2.4 million in power bill savings over the next 20 years.

Solar Power in Everett, MA

Everett is served by National Grid, who charges up to 20 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh). In addition, the utility has increased its rates significantly in recent years: most customers experienced a power bill increase of more than 10% from 2016 to 2017, and a similar price increase is expected by 2018. Therefore, the potential savings of solar panels are significant in Everett.

When you generate energy with solar panels, you are not only reducing your power bill: for every 1,000 kWh of energy generated, you are awarded a Solar Renewable Energy Credit (SREC). As of May 2017, each SREC sells for around $270, which means a solar panel system leaves $470 in your pocket each time it produces 1,000 kWh.

If you live in Everett, you also have access to a broad range of tax benefits that make solar panel systems more affordable:

  • Tax exemptions: You are not billed any sales tax when you purchase a solar panel system, and are exempt from an increase in property taxes even though your property becomes much more valuable after installing solar.
  • State tax credit: You can claim 15% of your investment as a deduction from state taxes, up to $1,000.
  • Solar Investment Tax Credit: In addition to the state tax credit, there is a 30% federal tax credit. Just keep in mind that this benefit only applies to solar panel systems installed before the start of 2020 – if you are considering solar panels for your property, don’t wait for too long!

If you own a significant amount of equity in your property, a home equity line of credit (HELOC) can be a great way to go solar. For those who don’t want to use a HELOC, there are many other ways to finance a solar panel system, often with $0 down. The combined economic benefits from energy savings, SREC sales, and tax credits is usually enough to cover your monthly loan payment and allow you to save money with solar from the very first day of operation!