Lowcountry surge in solar power use

CHARLESTON, SC – Over the summer there was flood of complaints about high electric bills. In some cases bills doubled in a single month.

But not for Bill Ramsay of Mount Pleasant, last year his monthly bill for June was $197.00– that was before 90-percent of his home ran on solar—this year’s bill for June was $10.50. His most recent bill for August was $89.00 compared to the $226.00 last year.

To get everything installed on top of his Park West home it cost about $30,000 but he is certainly starting to see a return on the investment.

What’s more the bulk of the initial cost of the project, Ramsay says, is offset by incentives and rebates.

“The combination of the federal and state tax credits, 30-percent federal tax credit 25-percent state tax credit– then a little gravy from the SCE&G PACE program. The government and SCE&G pay for 65-percent of the project.”

Because of the incentives places like Sustainable Energy Solutions in West Ashely have been very busy with installs. We caught up with Adam Eiserman on top of home off Highway 41.

“The last six months business has doubled. The rebates are paying for over half of it. And that is why the return is so low. Now your energy bill is decreasing by whatever you choose to offset and yes with the tax benefits your return on investment is about 5-years.”

If solar is something you are considering the federal and state incentive programs will expire at the end of 2016 and you also need to check with your HOA on solar panel protocol.

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