Most households save between £65 and £220 per year with solar panels. Homeowners that don’t use much energy can expect to save a bit more. Some people make up to £450 per year from their solar panels.
Where solar panels were once very expensive, there were grants to help reduce costs. Now, solar panels are a lot cheaper but might not be a great source of profit. With solar panels, you’ll generate your own electricity.
You’ll make money by reducing the amount that you buy from the National Grid. Included in your profits, you can also make money by selling any that you don’t need.
Read on to find out how much money you can make from solar panels.
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- – Are solar panels worth it? You decide
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How Much Do Solar Panels Cost?
Before you start to work out your potential profit, you’ll need to know how much you’ll spend in the first place. Today, solar panels for the average house cost around £6,000.
Solar panels are much cheaper than they used to be. Even in the early 2010s, the same solar panels would have cost around £20,000. Since the late 1970s, the cost of solar panels has reduced by 99%.
Be prepared to pay for solar panels from your own pocket. Solar panel grants aren’t available often, so you’re unlikely to get much assistance. You can borrow money through a Green Deal loan, but for most people, this outweighs the benefits since you’ll need to pay the money back.
However, it might be a good solution if you want to actively be greener with your energy.
How Do You Make Money From Your Solar Panels?
Most of your profit from your solar panels will come from the savings you make. The amount you save will depend on your energy use.
Your solar panels will generate power that you can use in your home. Any power you generate stops you from needing to pay another company for energy. If you generate a lot of energy, you could save hundreds of £s. If your solar panels aren’t that efficient, you’re likely to save a lot less.
You’ll also make a profit from selling excess energy, by generating more than you need. A two-way smart meter records how much energy you buy, but also how much leaves your property.
You Can Sell Energy to the National Grid, but Might Also Need to Buy Some Back During Times When You’re Running Low.
You used to be able to sell energy through a Feed-In Tariff (FIT). This scheme was closed to new applicants in 2019, but many energy providers were still willing to buy excess energy. In 2019 the government announced that new Smart Exchange tariffs would allow people who installed solar panels on their home from 1st January 2020 to once again sell excess energy back to the National Grid.
You’re likely to generate more energy than you need when it’s warm, bright and sunny. On overcast days, and at night, you’ll be using more than you generate.
How Much Money Can You Make From Solar Panels?
Most people should expect to make between £65 and £220 per year. Some save up to £500 if they have good weather throughout the year and don’t use too much energy at home. Export payments – the money you get from selling your excess energy – can increase the profit you’ll make.
What About a Solar Panel Battery?
A solar panel battery costs extra. The price of a battery can add anything from £1,000 to £10,000 to your total installation cost. However, they can also help you store power like a squirrel that’s hoarding for winter.
When the weather’s bright, you’ll generate more power than you need. Instead of selling the excess to the grid, you can store it in a battery. This means that it’s available when needed, at night or on overcast days.
With a solar panel battery, you can save more money, but you’ll need to decide if the extra expense during installation is worth it.
How Long Will Solar Panels Last?
To start making money from your solar panels, you’ll need to have repaid your original investment whilst your solar panels are still working. For that reason, it’s important to know how long those solar panels will last. Even with minimal maintenance, like cleaning once or twice a year, your solar panels should keep working for up to 50 years.
Assuming that you make £250 a year from your solar panels, it will take 24 years before you’ll really make a profit. If you generate a lot more power than you’ll need, making £400 per year could put you in profit by your 16th year of solar panel ownership.
Until you break even, you’ll essentially have paid upfront for many years of cheaper energy. Your monthly electricity bills will be lower, but you’ll have paid this money at the start. Once you’ve broken even, any future savings are ones that you can really take advantage of.
How Your Behaviour Makes a Difference
You can control how much money you make from solar panels. Your behaviour at home makes a difference. If you’re energy conscious, you’ll use less power and will be able to sell more to the National Grid. If you’re less energy conscious, there’s still a chance that you could need to buy power from your energy company.
Having solar panels is likely to make you think more about your behaviour. You’ll start to be more careful, switching lights off when you leave the room or spending less time in the shower.
You may be more cautious about leaving things to charge for longer than they need, or using your laptop whilst also watching TV. As you adjust your habits, you could make a bigger profit from your solar panels.
Non-Financial Benefits of Solar Panels
Many solar panel owners think of benefits that go beyond their financial profit. Solar energy is clean, renewable, sustainable and non-polluting. As well as making money from their solar panels, owners do their bit for the environment.
The more solar energy you generate at home, the less you’ll need to rely on the National Grid. Since much of the power from the National Grid is still made by burning fossil fuels, taking some of the pressure away will help to look after the planet.
Solar panels will only really make money if you’ve got a long time to wait. You’ll need to be sure that you’ll be in your home long-term, not planning to move in a few years, and will need to accept that you’ll pay a lot of front for fairly small savings each year.
Though the money you make will eventually overtake your initial investment, solar panel aren’t the get rich quick scheme that many once believed they were. If you’re going to invest, think a lot about the costs and how slowly you’ll make your money back. Then, consider how you’ll help planet Earth and reduce your monthly energy bills.
Quick Solar & Green Energy FAQs
The savings you make will depend on several different factors. First, you’ll need to find a good energy tariff for the electricity you do need to buy. With an export tariff, you can be paid for excess power that you don’t need for your own home.
Next, make sure that your house is suitable for solar panels. Solar panels should be put on a south-facing roof that’s not shaded by buildings or trees. If you don’t have a suitable location, the chances are that you won’t make the savings you expect.
Even the location of your home will have an impact on how much you’ll save with solar panels. Houses in the south of England have access to more sunshine throughout the year, whilst those in northern Scotland will generate less electricity.
Most households with solar panels save between £65 and £220 per year. Some save even more.
You’ll be able to generate your own electricity, then sell the excess to the National Grid. If you include a storage battery in your solar panel system, you can also store some of the excesses to use when you don’t generate enough.
At times when you don’t make enough power of your own, you can buy from the National Grid to make up the shortfall. With a solar plus battery, you can even buy overnight when energy is cheaper and store it for use through the day.
Today, domestic equipment allows any homeowner to benefit from green energy. You may not feel ready to install a geothermal heat pump or add a wind turbine to your garden but might feel like your own solar panels could help your bank balance and the environment.
Solar energy is entirely renewable. The power comes straight from the sun, so it won’t go anywhere in the near future. Assuming that you don’t live in the Arctic Circle, you will have access to the sun’s rays every day. Some days are better than others, though you’ll almost always find that there’s some sunshine to help you to generate power. Solar panels soak up the sunlight, converting it to usable energy.
Being renewable, solar power’s less harmful to the environment. Though photovoltaic equipment needs to be made and maintained, as long as it’s in place, it will keep creating new energy. Nobody needs to dig, mine or burn fossil fuels for electricity. For the most part, solar panels will work on their own. Looking after solar panels takes very little effort, and parts don’t need replacing very often.
How Can Money Savings Advice Help You With Solar Energy?
Here at Money Savings Advice, we have partnered with some of the UK’s leading Solar Energy companies. They have already helped thousands of people get the best Solar Panels & Solar Energy solutions for their homes and they can do the same for you.
Choosing an independent Solar management company means they won’t proceed with a scheme unless they are sure it is in your best interests. They are also regulated by the FCA, which gives you an additional layer of protection.
If you would like to speak to one of these Solar Energy companies who can help you, then click on the below and answer the very simple questions.