Monday, April 20, 2009

Go Green

As I am sure everyone already knows I am a fan of Jon & Kate plus 8. Yes I know I know it makes me a horrible person. Can we skip all that drama for a minute? I watched their go green special last night, and now I think I may be obsessed with solar power.

Keep in mind that I live in a house with a green expert, my daddy, who knows almost everything about green power. We recycle, turn off lights, use as little water as possible (wash a max of 2 loads of laundry a day, one sink of dishes per day, one shower a day per person, turn off water while we brush our teeth....etc.) and all in all just try to conserve energy.

The Gosselins are getting huge tax credits for applying solar panels to their home. I think it was something in the neighborhood of $7,500 + some. Now don't get too excited. The estimated total cost of the entire project was over $50,000! I decided to do a little homework to see what Tennessee laws say about these tax credits. Here is what I found:

Assumed Installation cost:
(before rebates, incentives or tax credits).
$54,000 assuming $9 /watt

Federal Tax Credit:
(Installation type: Residential )


Monthly Payment (6.5% apr, 30 years):


Increase in Property Value:

Exempt from Property Tax:

First-year Utility Savings: Since this is not a business application, these savings are in after tax dollars. So, your realized savings may actually be higher!

Average Monthly Utility Savings:
(over 25-year expected life of system)

Average Annual Utility Savings:
(over 25-year expected life of system)

25-year Utility Savings:

Return on Investment (ROI):
(with Solar System ave. cost set as asset value)

Return on Investment (ROI):
(with Property appreciation set as asset value)

Years to Break even:
(Includes property value appreciation)
29 years

Years to Break even:
(Assuming no property value appreciation)
36 years

Greenhouse Gas (CO2) Saved: over 25-year system life
160.0 tons (320,000 auto miles)

After reading the stats and weighing the pros and cons, I would have to say that this is something to look into. Seeing that stat about the 36 years to break even was hard to swallow, but all in all it is a great way to reduce global warming and CO2 emissions.
Does anyone already have solar panels?