Are solar panels worth it in the UK?

by James Martin II on February 13, 2013

Solar panels

With all the tumult around the subsidisation of solar power and other renewables in the UK, any households that were considering going solar are probably asking themselves whether going solar is worth the cost. The answer for many households is ‘yes’. What are the things that need to be taken into account when considering installing a solar PV system?

Going solar: Weighing the options

Solar Selections has published a number of articles on the topic of solar panels as an investment choice. The reality is that going solar is one of the safest, most attractive investment options that currently available in the UK, thanks to the government’s feed-in tariff, the increasing affordability of solar PV system installations, and the rising price of electricity.

Solar panels compare favourably to numerous other conventional investments, offering returns on investment (ROI) of 14-22% as opposed to the <5% returns generally associated with savings accounts, bonds and deposit plans, but without the risk that comes with investing in stocks. The security of investment that a solar system offers germinates from 2 factors that are seen as highly certain over the next 2 decades: The first is the fact that the UK’s incentive for generating solar power (the feed-in tariff) is guaranteed for 20 years from installation and is inflation-indexed, and the second is the inexorably rising price of electricity. This means that going solar really is a worthwhile endeavour for those who choose the right system.

System sizes vary, and it’s important to choose a solar system capacity that is right for your home and budget. However, as an example, a typical 4 kilowatt (kW) solar system could save a UK home up to £1,200 on electricity bills annually.

Is my home eligible for government solar incentives?

One important question that needs to be asked when it comes to considering an investment in solar is whether energy efficiency opportunities have been sufficiently taken advantage of before a system is installed. The government requires a minimum ‘D’ Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating for homes to be eligible for a solar system to be eligible for the full feed-in tariff rates. Around 50% of UK homes are estimated to meet this criteria, but a full assessment is necessary for each home in order to verify whether this is the case. Read more about EPC ratings.

Choosing a solar system installer

The solar system installation market is highly competitive, and there are numerous installer to choose from in any given area of the UK. The first thing to do for UK residents is to shop around. Luckily, Solar Selections can help you compare installation quotes from installers in your region for free. If your interested, simply request a comparison of solar quotes by filling out the form to the right of the page or contacting us by phone (020 7205 2267) or email (sales@solarselections.co.uk).

Top image via Panasonic Solar

© 2013 Solar Selections Ltd

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