Oregon’s Solar + Storage Rebate Program
If you’re purchasing a solar energy system for your property, you’d be keen to take advantage of any incentives available. Incentives can come in different forms and can from federal and local governments. Oregon’s Solar + Storage Rebate Program is an incentive from the state government. It issues rebates for solar electric and solar + storage systems for residents and low-income service providers in Oregon. We’ll explain the details of the program and how you can apply for this rebate.
About the Solar + Storage Rebate Program
The Solar + Storage Rebate Program comes from Oregon’s Department of Energy (ODOE). This program aims to help expand access to renewable energy for low and moderate-income Oregonians. This program originates from Oregon’s Enrolled House Bill 2618 (HB2618) in 2019. This house bill effectively requires Oregon’s State Department of Energy to adopt a rule program for providing rebates for the purchase, construction, or installation of residential and certain non-residential solar electric systems and paired solar and storage systems.
HB2618 also states that there are rebate limits under the program. The total limit for these rebates is set annually. The rebates are also specifically issued for systems that will be installed for low or moderate-income residential customers, and low-income service providers.
How does the Rebate Program work for homeowners?
The rebate program works for homeowners by providing a monetary rebate for the installation of a solar energy system and an energy storage system. The rebate amounts will depend on which category of homeowner you fall into and the size and the net cost of your solar energy system. The ODOE specifically defines the net cost of your solar energy system as the total of all the eligible costs, minus any incentives given by your utility company or the Energy Trust of Oregon.
Rebates amounts per customer type
For low or moderate-income homeowners, their rebate calculation will be up to 60% of the net cost of their solar energy system or $5,000, whichever amount is less. The solar energy system must have $1.80 per watt (DC) of installed capacity.
Homeowners who aren’t considered low or moderate-income and eligible for an electric utility incentive can also apply for the rebate. For these customers, the rebate will amount to up to 40% of the net cost or $5,000, whichever is less. Their solar energy system must have $0.20 per watt (DC) of installed capacity.
Homeowners that aren’t considered low or moderate income and aren’t eligible for an electric utility incentive can also apply for the rebate. Their rebate amount will go up to 40% of the net cost of the system or $5,000, whichever is less. Their solar energy system will have to reach $0.50 per watt (DC) of installed capacity.
How do I receive the rebate?
The rebate is paid directly to the contractor who installs your solar energy system. This can’t be any contractor, as the contractor has to be approved by the ODOE. The ODOE keeps an up-to-date list of approved contractors on its website. The contractor will then pass the savings onto you by deducting the amount off the total cost of your system, and they will handle the application process. You should also discuss any additional incentives that you can apply for, such as a federal tax credit or an Energy Trust of Oregon incentive. That way, you can make the most of the incentives on offer.
How do I qualify for the Rebate?
To qualify for the Solar + Storage Rebate Program your household needs to be considered as low or moderate-income. There are three ways you can confirm your eligibility for the program. Each of these has an accompanying LMI (Low and Moderate Income) Eligibility Option form. These forms are to be filled by contractors, although you can access these forms to get an idea of the information required.
- The homeowner is determined eligible for certain Oregon Housing and Community Services programs. See LMI Eligibility Option 1 form for more information.
- The homeowner is determined eligible for certain Oregon Department of Human Services or Oregon Health Authority programs. See LMI Eligibility Option 2 form for more information.
The homeowner can prove qualifying household income. The homeowner must provide an Oregon Department of Revenue tax transcript for each tax filer residing at the household’s physical address. See LMI Eligibility Option 3 form for more information.
Aside from the information mentioned above, there are some more bits of information worth mentioning. Firstly of all, your solar energy and storage system must be installed on real property in Oregon by an ODOE approved contractor. The contractor must submit a reservation application before starting the construction or installation of your solar system or paired solar and storage system.
If you are purchasing a solar + storage system, you will have to purchase them at the same time from the same contractor. This way you will be eligible to apply for a rebate on both the solar + and storage system. If you purchase and install them separately, they will not be eligible for the rebate. Your solar energy system must also meet the minimum Total Solar Resource Fraction measurements. Although, this will be handled by your contractor.
Get started with solar energy today
If you are looking to start your transition to solar energy, we are here to help. Our website also has a free online estimate tool that generates a personalized report for you from a simplified questionnaire. That report will contain the potential savings you can net, and the cost of a solar energy system installed on your property. You can also contact us directly via phone at +1 (602) 363-8919 or via email at Scott@elitesolarenergy.org for more information regarding solar energy for your property.