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RPSs are milestones for utility companies that mandate how much of their energy production must come from renewable sources by a certain deadline. Washington, D.C., set its standard at 20% renewable sources by 2023. Utility companies face fines if they do not meet the deadline, so there is strong incentive in Washington, D.C., to move residents onto solar.
Good net metering laws, such as those through Pepco (Potomac Electric Power Company), provide a system by which solar panels or other renewable energy generators are connected to the grid, allowing customers to offset the cost of the power they draw from the utility with credits they earn on their own production. When your solar system produces more power than you need, the excess gets absorbed by the grid, which you see as a credit on your electric bill.
Interconnection standards are rules for connecting solar and other electrical generation systems to the grid. Rules are pretty good in Washington, D.C. They make installation easier and usually less expensive, and net metering is more reliable too.
The district offers generous PBIs, which are incentives based on the actual power that your system generates. Also referred to as Solar Power Performance Payments, the payments are based on kilowatt-hours (kWh) or BTUs generated by your system, as measured by the meter. The electricity produced is credited as Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SRECs).
Installers can check whether you qualify for one or more of the district’s strong rebate programs. With rebates, you usually have the choice of taking the money in a lump sum or deducting it from the cost of the system once installed.
Keep paying your previous property tax after you install a home solar system. Homeowners in the district enjoy a property tax exemption. The value of their home will not be reassessed.
Along with the great programs and exemptions above, homeowners in the District of Columbia also qualify for the sizable tax credit from the Federal government, of course. The Investment Tax Credit (ITC) is worth 26% of the system cost as of this writing, and will be deducted from your Federal income tax.
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