The days when solar panels are seen as overpriced novelty pieces for extremely passionate environmentalists has passed. The cost of a solar panel purchase and installation has dropped by more than half since 2010. Solar initiatives have also become the source of appealing government incentives and rebates, thanks to the lower annual energy costs they yield. Even critics who dislike the look of solar panels have quieted once solar-powered rooftop shingles that blend into your roof's appearance became available. Over the last year, the number of people who use solar energy grew by 26 percent.
If you're still not convinced, here are a few more reasons to try solar energy for yourself:
Environmental Considerations: Sometimes the conversation surrounding the appeal of solar energy becomes so focused on the incentives and savings that come along with it, that one of its original environmental intentions goes overlooked. Nevertheless, choosing to use solar energy to power your home significantly reduces your carbon footprint.
Property Values: As the popularity of solar panels continues to increase, so do the values of homes that continue to use them.
Reliability: The typical performance guarantee of a solar panel, or photovoltaic (PV), system is 20 years. You can also extend the use of your system beyond this stated guarantee for an additional five to 10 more years, though this means that it will likely be working at just 80 percent of its original capacity.
If you're considering switching to solar energy for your home, another factor to be mindful of is that you can use solar and still receive an electric bill because you are still using the area's electric grid. The upside to that condition is that many electric companies now allow customers to sell extra energy back to the grid, running the meter backwards and allowing for further savings.