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Depreciation of Solar Panels

Depreciation of Solar Panels

First, it’s important to be aware that tax incentives may be different from those offered by the federal and state governments. Other than the deferral and state tax credits the most well-known incentives for tax purposes is the solar 26% credit. Customers who use solar energy are able to claim the 100% depreciation tax credit in the Tax Cut and Jobs Act of 2017. This will reduce their losses as the solar equipment they own decreases over time. The below solar equipment is eligible for this bonus

  • Solar PV panels
  • Inverters
  • Equipment for the balance-of-system
  • Racking
  • Circuit breakers
  • Transformers to boost your performance
  • Surge arrestors
  • Batteries and other storage devices for energy

This bonus is not only for solar-powered equipment, but includes sales and taxes. This bonus also applies to installation costs, and indirect costs (as as long as you prove they are not). There are different tax incentives available for solar panels across various states. Certain states, such as California, have more incentives than others.

Solar Panel Depreciation (or solar panel depreciation) is a tax code that drives innovations and higher investment on renewable energy. Additionally, it helps consumers reduce the costs of installing solar panels.

Depreciation simply signifies that the value of an asset decreases with time. Depreciation can be used by businesses to recover the costs of assets that lose value over time.

Solar energy depreciation is not for homeowners considering switching to solar. However, it can be applied to businesses since solar energy is regarded as a business expense.

Is Depreciation a Deficit?

Depreciation, as a term implies, refers to the depreciation of value because of wear and tear, or even obsolescence. Depreciation is accounted for by taxpayers when they file their annual taxes to reduce their tax liability. This can lead to significant savings. There are numerous types of tangible and intangible property that can depreciate, provided they last more than one year.

Here are a few examples of properties that are depreciating:

  • Buildings
  • Machinery
  • Vehicles
  • Furniture
  • Equipment
  • Patents
  • Copyrights
  • Software for computers

In order to be eligible for tax deductions Taxpayers must make use of the property for earning income. They cannot deduct the property’s business-related use if they use it for business or personal reasons. It’s no longer possible to depreciate the property once the owner has paid back its cost or was removed from the service.

The benefits of depreciation for business

Businesses are exempt from depreciation since it is only applicable to those who earn money from their property. Businesses can deduct depreciation to spread out the costs of buying assets over time. This allows for a more precise measurement of revenues and profits, which is crucial for accounting and reporting and also for making decisions.

Companies can benefit from depreciation for:

  • Recover assets’ costs throughout their useful lives
  • Save tax
  • Keep accurate records of revenue

How does the depreciation of solar panels work?

There are a variety of methods for the calculation of solar devaluation. The five-year Modified Accelerated Cost Recovery System (MACRS) depreciation schedule is the most sought-after.

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An easy illustration of the Depreciation Process

Let’s suppose you own an solar system that is priced at $100,000. The first step is to claim the 26% tax credit. This is because the IRS cuts the credit’s basis by half. It leaves (26 percent / 23 percent). The $100,000 price could be depreciated by 13% to reduce it to $87,000. The bonus of 100% can be claimed within the first year following you have installed your solar system. Experts suggest using the MACRS model for calculating the amount that your solar system’s value will decrease. Let’s assume that the federal government gives 24% solar energy tax credit, while the state government offers only five percent. After subtracting the 26% solar credit, the cost fell to $87,000. This is the basic cost. Add the rates of both the federal and state governments to find out how much you could reduce your expenses.

  • Federal tax credit $87,700 + 24 percent = $20.880
  • Credit for State taxes: $87,700, X 5% = 4,350

The tax incentive from the federal government is available completely within of the initial year. The amount of the state credit you’re claiming will depend on the length of time it is to claim it.

What is the depreciation rate for 26 percent Solar Tax Credit?

The IRS declares that the base for depreciation is one-half of the tax credits allowed. If you buy solar in 2021, and the tax credit is 26 percent then your depreciation basis would represent 87 percent of the cost of solar (100 percent (or [26%*.5]).

What are the Federal and State Savings Rates?

Businesses are now able depreciate 100 percent of their cost basis in the first year in the Federal level, thanks to The Tax Cut and Jobs Act. The five-year plan will spread your state savings. Your tax brackets will be needed to calculate your federal and state savings. In the following example we’ll use 24 percent federal tax and the state tax of 8.

How do you determine your solar depreciation savings?

To determine the savings, we will use for calculating the cost savings we’ll use the MACRS method. Imagine that you bought a solar system for $500,000 by 2021. This will make you eligible to take advantage of the 26% Federal Solar Incentive Credit. Since the depreciable basis is half of the tax credit amount, we’ll need to take 13% off the solar system costs (26%*.5), which leaves us with $435,000 of depreciable basis ($500,000*[100%-13%]).

We will need to add up $435,000 and 24 per cent in order to calculate the federal savings. That will result in $104,400 in the first year. The $435,000 will be multiplied by 8.8, which will give us $34,800. Your savings from the state will be calculated over the five-year MACRS calendar.

Solar depreciation could save you $139,200. That’s nearly 28 percent (or 27.84 percent) of the total cost of your solar system.

The Benefits from Going Solar for businesses

Utilizing using the MACRS The Solar Tax Repayment Plan will aid your business in obtaining an investment in solar. This is crucial since solar energy has numerous advantages for all businesses. These are only a few of the many reasons to consider installing an solar system.

Federal Tax Credit

There are many business advantages with the federal tax credit. It reduces tax burdens significantly. Based on the percentage of tax that helps you cut down your tax obligation in dollar terms. The percentages can vary based on the date you have installed your system. You may also be eligible for tax credits that are not provided by your state.


Depreciation on solar panel investments can make it more affordable and reduces your tax burden like we mentioned earlier. The accelerated depreciation schedule allows you to better manage the costs of your first year.

Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC).

Another significant financial gain is Solar Renewable Energy Certificates. Certain states require utility companies to produce a certain percentage of their energy using renewable energy resources (RECs). Some states stipulate that a certain number of certificates be generated by solar energy sources alone.

Solar power is even more attractive, since you’ll own just one SREC per megawatt-hour produced by solar power. To meet their quotas, utilities will purchase your certificates. It is possible to earn several hundred dollars some instances.

Energy Independence

Solar panels can also provide energy independence, which could save you money over the long run. Natural gasoline and fossil fuel prices fluctuate from month to month which makes the financial planning of businesses difficult. Solar panels allow you to create your own electricity, which reduces dependence on utility companies and their fluctuating prices.

Why is solar investment more beneficial over other equipment?

Solar investments can bring many benefits to businesses including lowering energy bills and saving the environment. Additionally, you can get a significant amount of cash back within the first year thanks to the 100 percent bonus depreciation policy. Businesses are likely to choose the asset that offers the most return. But, solar is the only option that will provide the highest return in the first year. It can be used to cover solar installation costs, or it can be invested elsewhere.

Are You Thinking of Going Solar? Contact LA Solar Group for more information

Many companies can now go solar with government-sponsored programs. Although solar is a significant investment, it is able to provide incredible rewards and benefits. The initial costs of solar are much lower because of tax credits as well as an amortization schedule that is accelerated. LA Solar Group is a great resource for anyone thinking of going solar.

LA Solar Group is a specialist on the installation and design of solar power systems. By designing a system that is custom-designed, we’ll maximize your return on your investment. We’re happy to answer any questions you have about solar energy and provide an estimate.



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