If you live in Illinois and are considering investing in a solar energy system for your home, here’s some great news for you: your state offers myriad solar incentives to help you out. Even if you aren’t quite ready to make your solar purchase, these Illinois solar rebates and incentives are sure to make the case for why solar is a smart decision in the Land of Lincoln.
The best way to compare your solar options and save money at the same time is by registering on the EnergySage Marketplace. When you compare quotes for solar panels on EnergySage's competitive solar marketplace, you can expect to see prices up to 20% lower than working with a single solar company. Read our updated article on the cost of solar panels to compare solar costs across states and by panel brand.
Top solar programs in Illinois
Illinois has two main solar policies that will have the biggest financial impact on your investment:
Illinois' SREC incentive: the Adjustable Block Program
Under the Adjustable Block Program, also known as Illinois Shines, you can earn one solar renewable energy certificate (SREC) for each megawatt hour (MWh) of electricity your solar system produces over 15 years. For the average residential system, this comes out to more than $10,000 in additional savings.
Illinois net metering
Thanks to Illinois’ net metering policy, your utility will buy back any excess electricity your solar system produces. Net metering ensures that you benefit from the full value of your solar panels and is a great way to balance out your electricity production and consumption, which do not always happen at the same time. Commonwealth Edison offers the top utility net metering program in Illinois.
ComEd commercial solar rebates
ComEd, one of IL’s largest utility companies, provides rebates for commercial and industrial (C&I) customers to help decrease the out-of-pocket costs of installing solar. If you’re a ComEd customer and install solar on your business, you’re eligible for $250 per kilowatt (kW) of installed solar power. To receive the rebate, your solar panel system cannot be larger than 2,000 kW in capacity.
Illinois solar tax breaks
These two tax incentives offered in Illinois can make going solar even more affordable:
Property tax break
Worried about your property tax bills going up because of the value your solar system will add to your home? Don’t be. The Special Assessment for Solar Energy Systems means that you will be taxed as if the panels were not even there.
The federal solar tax credit
Don’t forget about federal solar incentives! With the investment tax credit (ITC), now referred to as the Residential Clean Energy Credit for residential systems, you can reduce the cost of your PV solar energy system by 30 percent. Keep in mind that the ITC applies only to those who buy their PV system outright (either with a cash purchase or a solar loan), and that you must have enough income for the tax credit to be meaningful (unless you’re a tax-exempt entity, in which case you might be eligible for a direct payment).