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.
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
Illinois’ renewable portfolio standard (RPS) means the state is committed to producing 25 percent of its electricity from renewable resources by 2025. That’s an ambitious goal, and to make it happen, the state has a program that rewards homeowners for helping Illinois reach that target. Under the Adjustable Block Program, also known as Illinois Shines, for each megawatt hour (MWh) of electricity your solar system produces, you will be granted one Solar Renewable Energy Credit (SREC) that you can then sell in the market, creating a nice income stream for the life of the system.
UPDATE: as of 2021, the Adjustable Block Program is no longer accepting new incentive applications.
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), you can reduce the cost of your PV solar energy system by 26 percent. Keep in mind that the ITC applies only to those who buy their PV system outright (either with a cash purchase or solar loan), and that you must have enough income for the tax credit be meaningful.