- Greater San Jose area
- San Jose
- North San Jose
- San Jose and surrounding area
San Jose, California is one of the nation’s leaders in renewable energy generation. In fact, San Jose government has projected a goal to generate 100% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2022. Wow! That’s an excellent goal to have, considering San Jose currently uses 6.1 kilowatt hours of electricity per year and could reduce their carbon dioxide emissions by 1.7 million metric tons.
Already with a leg up in the game, San Jose generates 21% of its electricity from renewable sources. As a powerhouse for top notch solar energy system installers, supportive legislation to help customers interested in solar energy, and an abundance of sunshine, the city is leading the pack in solar initiatives.
What About the Sun?
One of the things San Jose, California is most famous for is its plethora of white sand beaches and abundant sunshine. With 78.5% of the year with sunny days (287 sunny days/year), San Jose is a prime location if you’re interested in harvesting energy from the sun. With an average of 5.5 peak sun hours per day, you’ll be capturing 1,578 hours of peak sun per year. And it’s during those hours that your peak solar power generation will occur.
The good thing about California is that the entire state is in the renewable energy game. As one of the friendliest clean energy states in the nation, as well as being rated as the #1 state in jobs for solar energy generation, why not take advantage? The Go Solar California! initiative was created as a joint effort of the California Energy Commission and the California Public Utilities Commission to partner together to make solar energy generation a reality for California residents. In fact, California has 17 standing pieces of solar legislation to assist homeowners and commercial businesses in installing solar energy systems and driving down costs.
What About the Cost?
The cost of electricity in San Jose has risen 13% in the last five years alone. And it’s projected to do the same in the years ahead. With the annual average utility bill totaling $94.59 in San Jose, a 5kW solar energy system can save San Jose residents up to $137.08/month on average. Essentially, you could walk away owing nothing to the utility companies at the end of the month should you decide to go solar.
The installation price tag is usually what people shy away from when thinking about going solar. But, the benefits tend to outweigh the costs. And, when it comes down to it, you’re investing in a system that will last, on average, at least 25 years and is cheaper than the average new car.
According to EIA.gov, getting a solar energy system installed in San Jose is 39% more cost effective than the rest of the nation. After state incentives, federal tax credits, and other rebates are applied to the purchase price, the average payback period for a solar system in San Jose is just under 9 years. At the 9th year, you’ll experience pure profit for the life of your system!
While the size of the system you need installed ultimately depends on how much energy you consume, the typical size system for a home in San Jose is 5kW. Based on this size, the estimated total cost for your system will be $20,950. With these prices, the estimated savings of your energy bill per year will be $1,645, and your estimated savings over the entire life of your system are $34,685.
What About the Legislation?
We talked briefly about California being a legislative-friendly state when it comes to solar energy. Let’s breakdown how friendly federal, state, and local rebates, tax credits, and other incentives can be to the price of your solar energy system.
One of the biggest incentives to installing solar energy system is the federal tax credit of 30%. Recently extended to 2019, this incentive allows you to shave 30% off the total cost of your system, with no cap on price. Based on the price of the 5kW system above, that’s a total of $6,285 right off the top, bringing the initial cost down to $14,665.
At the state level, the California Solar Initiative (CSI) is a rebate program in partnership with the Go Solar California! initiative to provide rebates on solar energy. It partners with San Jose’s electric utility companies to offer the rebates and the prices fluctuate over time. The solar company you choose to go with will help you determine which rebates you qualify for.
Take a look at solar incentives on DSIRE.org’s site to see what types of incentives are available.