Florida solar panels: The complete guide in 2024

Data updated Jun 18, 2024

Written by: Emily Walker

Interested in going solar? You'll need to install a 14.07 kW solar panel system to cover the average electric bill in Florida, which will cost you about $23,273 after the federal tax credit.

Cost for an average system in Florida


Out of pocket cost, cash
$33,247
Federal tax credit (30%)
- $9,974
Price post tax credit
$23,273

20-year savings $43,927
Payback period 8 Years
Electricity offset 100%
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As long as your federal tax bill is high enough, you can take advantage of the federal investment tax credit (ITC).

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Going solar in Florida

They don't call it the Sunshine State for Nothing: With an average of between 230 and 250 days of sunshine a year, Florida is pretty ideal for rooftop solar. Thanks to robust net-metering policies and the federal solar tax credit, Floridians can even see some significant savings with solar.

Here's what you should know about going solar in Florida.

Cost

How much do solar panels cost in Florida?

Solar panels will save you a lot of money over time, but the upfront costs aren't cheap. The average Florida homeowner needs a 14.07 kW solar panel system to cover their electricity needs, which comes out to $33,247 before incentives. Prices range from $28,260 to $38,234, but after the federal tax credit, that drops by 30%. 

Several cities and towns in Florida even provide grants, rebates, or low-interest loans to homeowners who install solar panels.

With prices and incentives like these, it’s no wonder why over 72,000 Florida homeowners have used EnergySage to receive and compare quotes for solar installations. You can expect to earn back your initial solar investment through electricity savings in about 8.31 years, while most systems last at least 25 years. You'll often see this number referenced as your solar payback period.

There are a few ways to finance your solar panel system so you don't have to provide all that money upfront. 

  • Cash purchase: You'll own the system and pay for it upfront. This provides the best long-term savings. 

  • Solar loan: Allows you to retain ownership of your system, while owing little to no money upfront. Solar loans aren't all created equal: If you have access to subsidized clean energy loans through local incentive programs, that's usually your best bet. A home equity loan or a personal loan are often your next best options––private solar loans typically come with higher interest rates or upfront fees.

  • Solar lease or power purchase agreement (PPA): A third-party company owns your system and either leases you the solar panels (solar lease) or allows you to purchase the electricity they generate (PPA). These generally provide the lowest savings and generate the most negative press about solar. If you choose this financing option, read the fine print: You can get trapped in them for longer than you'd like.

Solar panels on a house

Incentives

What are the best solar rebates and incentives in Florida?

Incentives help bring solar's price tag down considerably in Florida. Here are the major ones to know about:

Incentive
Average savings in Florida
Description

Residential Clean Energy Tax Credit, formerly the federal investment tax credit (ITC)

$9,974

Lowers your solar panel system's cost by 30%

Florida solar sales tax exemption

6% of your system value.

You don't need to pay any sales tax on new solar panel systems in Florida.

Florida solar property tax exemption

The average property tax in Florida is 0.91%

If you use solar energy as a source of power, you won't need to pay property tax on the value your solar panels add to your property.

Is net metering available in Florida?

In some states, you'll earn bill credits from your utility company when your solar panel system generates excess electricity and sends it to the grid. This incentive is known as net metering—basically a solar buyback program—and makes it so you will owe very little, or even nothing, on your electric bills with solar panels.

Florida does offer net metering but the solar metering is credited in kilowatt-hours (kWh), rather than dollars. Any monthly fixed costs (like meter connection fees) may need to be paid in cash—kWh credits won’t apply.

Credits roll over from month to month but reset at the end of a 12-month period. Any excess credits will be converted to cash at a reduced rate per kWh and will be paid to you. Typically, the rate ranges from 3 to 5 cents per kWh, depending on the utility provider. Each utility has its own "true-up" date, which is when the counter resets.

A house with rooftop solar panels connected to the grid

Equipment

Equipment quality

Each year, solar panels get more and more efficient—that is, they produce more power per square foot. As of 2024, the most popular solar panels can produce about 400 watts of electricity when they’re in full sunlight. If you want to make the most of your roof’s solar potential, get panels with at least that much power output.  

You should also make sure to select a solar inverter setup that makes sense for your roof’s layout. 

And if you want or need a solar battery, be sure to pick one that can integrate cleanly with that inverter. 

Premium equipment can come with a high price tag, but it will often save you more money in the long run. The best equipment tends to have the best warranty terms, often guaranteed to 25 years (sometimes even 40!), so you’re covered in case you need repairs or replacements. The highest-quality panels also degrade more slowly, so they’ll maintain more of their power output further into the future.

See our list of the best solar panels

resources

Top solar resources for Florida

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