With the arrival of Summer in the UK (finally) you may be looking at all that sunshine and wondering whether a Solar PV installation would be right for your home. You can find out by filling out our Home Energy Assessment now, which will calculate an estimate of how much a Solar PV system would make in your home.
Solar PV systems can save you money in two ways – the first (and most obvious) is that a Solar PV system will generate electricity that you can use free of charge. In a well sited location (a South facing roof of at least 15m2 area at a 30 degree angle) a typical 3kWp system can generate enough electricity to meet 50% of your electricity demand. The second way that a Solar PV system can save you money is through the Government’s Feed-In Tariff Scheme, which pays you for generating electricity using your Solar PV system. Everyone is eligible for the scheme as long as your installation is carried out by an MCS accredited engineer. Through the scheme you can be paid for the electricity you generate (a Generation Tariff) and for the electricity you generate but don’t use which is automatically exported back to the Grid (an Export Tariff) – this is estimated to be 50-75% of the electricity you generate.
Both the Generation Tariff and Export Tariff are paid according to rates that are reduced over time as the price of Solar PV systems reduces –but the rate you are paid stays the same regardless of future reductions once you are signed up to the scheme. The last reduction happened on the 1st of May and the next one is scheduled for the 1stJuly – here are the numbers:
The Export Tariff will be staying at a rate of 4.64p/kWh until the next reduction. To be paid the highest Generation Tariff rate you will have to make sure your property is rated as at least band D for energy efficiency before the Solar PV is installed. If this is not possible then the Lower rate will be paid. The Medium rate is for homeowners whose property is at least D rated but who own over 25 other properties which have also had Solar PV installed.
Typical Solar PV systems cost around £4,000-£5,000. With Feed-In Tariff payments over 20 years of the installation’s lifetime and the energy bill savings a well-sited system should pay for itself in around 10 years, giving a lifetime profit of around £4,000-£5,000. If you’re interested in Solar PV but don’t want the upfront cost of a system you can now get your system part funded by a Green Deal loan – we explain more in our earlier blog on the Feed-In Tariff and Green Deal here.
So, if you’ve been thinking about getting Solar PV installed but weren’t sure when to take the plunge, now is the best time to maximise your returns. You can find out more about Solar PV in our Solar PV section.