Xcel Energy’s Solar*Rewards program is back, offering customers who add solar panels to their homes and commercial buildings a chance to earn money on energy their solar systems generate. Yes, you read that right, Xcel will PAY YOU for the excess electricity you produce. Here’s all you need to know about Solar*Rewards in 2023:
What is Solar*Rewards and How Does it Work?
Solar*Rewards offers solar home and business owners the opportunity to create cash flow by selling back excess energy to the grid. When your solar system generates more energy than your household or business is consuming, the remaining energy is passed over to Xcel Energy’s grid, and you earn a Renewable Energy Credit (REC). RECs are then paid out to you via check, monthly or annually.
How Does Xcel Measure My Solar Production?
All solar customers receive net energy metering benefits (NEM). Net energy metering is a service element that can offset your electric consumption by selling back the excess electricity generated from your solar array using a single net meter. A net meter is a bi-directional meter that measures the flow of electric energy in both directions. When your system produces more solar energy than is needed, the extra energy is added to Xcel’s grid and you receive a REC on your monthly bill.
How Much Do I Earn per kWh?
Each REC certifies the generation of one megawatt-hour (MWh) of renewable energy. It’s paid annually for ten years with payments made by check at the beginning of the year.
For residential solar owners:
- Performance Incentive per kWh: $0.04
For commercial solar owners:
- Performance Incentive per kWh: $0.03
There are also specific incentives for income-qualified customers for single and multi-family homes, as well as non-profits and other organizations.
What is the Solar*Rewards Program Budget for 2023?
The total budget for 2023 is $9,467,130. Over $1.4M has been allocated from the total budget in January, leaving the available budget as of January 29, 2023 $7,981,454.
- Total Budget: $9,467,130
- Budget Allocated: $1,485,676 (16%)
- Budget Available: $7,981,454 (84%)
Due to differing incentive levels for residential and commercial customers, Xcel tracks and allocates costs for the Solar Rewards program using their available budget. The budget is updated on a monthly basis for the dollars allocated and forecasted. In 2021, Xcel’s budget was 73% allocated by April.
How Do I Know if I’m Eligible?
To be eligible for Solar*Rewards, you must meet the following criteria:
- You must be a current customer of Xcel Energy
- This must be the first incentive program you have participated in
- You must own the building, home, or property upon which the solar array will be installed
- You must agree to connect your system to the Xcel Energy grid and sign a 10-year Solar Rewards contract with Xcel Energy
- Install a system that produces between 0.5 and 20.00 kW (Anything larger will not qualify for Solar*Rewards, but there are other programs for larger systems)
- The system you install cannot generate more than 120% of your historical electricity use (based on an analysis of your past usage)
- You must meet minimum personal liability insurance policy requirements – $300,000 for 40 kW AC or less
- You need to work with a reputable and professional solar installation company like Cedar Creek Energy
- Your project needs to be installed within 365 days of the date of your application
Why Act Now?
Since there is a limited budget for rewards, you’ll want to sign up as soon as possible to secure your spot and start earning money back! The program will offset the cost of installing your PV solar system by 4 cents per kWh produced by your system in excess of what you are using. Depending on the size of your solar array, this incentive alone can add up to thousands of dollars per year. Once your application is accepted, you will reap the rewards of this program for 10 years. There is no better time than now to switch to solar and take advantage of these incentives while they last!
Where Do I Sign Up?
First, determine if your home or business is optimal for a solar installation by contacting Cedar Creek Energy. We will schedule a no-obligation site visit to discuss if your home or commercial building is a good candidate for solar.
If so, Cedar Creek Energy will work directly with Xcel Energy on your behalf to create your account, complete the necessary forms and paperwork, and submit the application for Solar*Rewards enrollment for you. We’ve got you covered.
We want our clients to receive the maximum funding and savings possible, which is why we stay updated on all rebates, programs, and financing opportunities. You can count on our expertise, innovation, and ability to develop the ideal solar solution that fits your needs, protects your investment, and maximizes your savings.