In a surprise piece of good news, the government announced last week that solar panel VAT will be scrapped until 2027. It’s something the renewables industry has been recommending for years, as a simple way to boost green generation in the UK. And for once our lawmakers have listened!
It’s now been three years since solar subsidies were phased out and tax rates first hiked, then dramatically scrapped. At the same time, electricity prices have continued to rise, especially during the recent energy crisis. So what does this mean for the economics of solar power? In short, are solar panels worth it today?
Speaking purely from a financial point of view, the answer is a resounding yes. Of course beyond the financial, there are many other environmental benefits to be gained from installing solar PV, adding residential battery storage, driving an electric vehicle etc. Not least because they all contribute directly or indirectly to tackling air pollution and the climate crisis.
Back to the financials. The solar Feed-in Tariff subsidy may have ended, but the cost of the technology has fallen by more than 50% over the past decade. Overall the cost of domestic solar electricity is now around 10p per kWh. This is well below the 19p average domestic import cost from the grid (which, by the way, increased by an average 4.9% each year over the past decade...).
For the past few years, electric car owners have benefited from government support to buy their new chargepoints. But all this is set to change early next year.
The Office for Zero Emission Vehicles (OZEV) grant, or the Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS) as it’s officially known, is closing to most homeowners.
It’s done its job, as the UK now has at least 300,000 private residential chargers (as well as over 26,000 public charging stations). Additionally, the government plans to make EV chargepoints compulsory in new build properties with parking spaces.
At a time when we’re facing parallel crises - soaring energy bills and a destabilising climate - more of us are keen to start investing in solar energy and other renewable technologies as a way to take personal action.
Home renewable generation is a reliable way to insulate yourself against the electricity price hikes and potential power shortages, while also tackling climate change. But the stumbling block is often the upfront investment required. So we’ve put together some suggestions on how to invest in solar panels and other forms of decarbonisation, broken down by the budget you may have to spend.
With the sun finally out (in passing), you may be wondering if now is the time to join the solar club. Panels are better looking and more powerful than ever before, energy bills are spiking, and perhaps your neighbours are charging their new electric cars from the sun.
But if there’s something holding you back, it may be that classic British concern: property prices. So today we’re going to try and answer the question... do solar panels increase the value of your house?
As part of his summer mini budget, the Chancellor announced the Green Homes Grant back in July. Now the details have been released, revealing which technologies will be included to help homeowners make their properties more energy efficient. We can confirm that solar PV will not be included in the grant.
The government says it wants the UK to be the best place in the world to build and own an electric vehicle.
To support this, it needs the National Grid to be smart, with a finely tuned set of tools available to balance demand and supply.
With this in mind, the government has announced that from July 2019, the grant of £350 per chargepoint available for home and workplace chargepoints will only be given to people installing smart chargers to charge their electric car.