What Are the Financial Benefits of Installing Large-Scale Solar Systems in Commercial Properties?

April 18, 2024

In the midst of the climate crisis, businesses are increasingly seeking clean and sustainable ways to power their operations. One method that has gained significant traction is the use of solar energy systems. But solar energy isn’t just beneficial to the environment – it also provides substantial financial rewards. In this article, we will illuminate the major financial advantages that your business can uncover by installing large-scale solar systems in commercial properties.

Lower Electricity Costs

One of the most immediate and tangible benefits that solar energy systems offer to businesses is the reduction in electricity costs. Commercial properties tend to consume a large amount of power, and the costs of electricity can quickly stack up.

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By installing a solar system, your business can significantly decrease, or even eliminate, its electricity bills. The sun is a free and abundant source of energy. Solar panels enable you to tap into this resource, converting sunlight into electricity that can power your commercial property.

The size of the reduction in electricity costs will depend on a number of factors, including the size of the solar system, the amount of sunlight your property receives, and your property’s energy consumption. However, many businesses find that the savings on electricity costs alone can offset the initial cost of solar installation within a few years.

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The Investment Tax Credit (ITC)

Another significant financial benefit comes in the form of the Investment Tax Credit (ITC). The ITC is a federal tax credit that allows businesses to deduct a portion of their solar energy system installation costs from their taxes.

The ITC was established to encourage businesses and individuals to invest in solar energy. It currently allows for a deduction of 26% of the cost of a solar system installation from federal taxes.

If your business installs a solar energy system in a commercial property, you’ll be eligible for this substantial tax incentive. This can dramatically reduce the overall cost of the solar system and expedite the return on your investment.

Increased Property Value

Solar energy systems can also add substantial value to your commercial properties. Numerous studies have found a strong correlation between the installation of solar systems and an increase in property value.

Commercial properties with solar energy systems are increasingly attractive to potential buyers and renters who value sustainability and anticipate future rises in energy costs. Solar panels are a visible demonstration of your business’s commitment to green practices and can enhance the overall appeal of your property.

Furthermore, as the cost of electricity continues to rise and solar technology continues to improve, the added value that a solar system brings to a property is likely to increase even further.

Depreciation Deductions

Solar energy systems are considered a depreciable asset, much like a new roof or HVAC system. This means that businesses can claim a depreciation deduction on their taxes, providing another substantial financial incentive for installing solar systems.

Under the Modified Accelerated Cost Recovery System (MACRS), businesses can deduct the depreciated value of their solar energy system from their taxable income. This further reduces the overall cost of the system and accelerates the payback period.

Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SRECs)

In some states, businesses with solar energy systems can earn Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SRECs). Each SREC represents the environmental benefits of producing one megawatt-hour (MWh) of electricity using your solar energy system.

SRECs can be sold on an open market, providing an additional source of revenue for businesses. The value of SRECs varies based on market conditions, but they can provide a significant boost to the financial benefits of your solar system.

By harnessing the power of the sun, businesses can not only contribute to a sustainable future but also unlock substantial financial benefits. Lower electricity costs, tax credits, increased property value, depreciation deductions, and the potential to earn SRECs all contribute to making solar energy systems a wise investment for commercial properties.

Enhanced Business Reputation

When it comes to operating a business in the modern era, public image is everything. Companies that demonstrate a commitment to sustainable and renewable practices are often viewed in a positive light by consumers. Installing large-scale solar systems in commercial properties can provide a considerable boost to your business’s reputation.

Investing in commercial solar installations signals to your customers, clients, and the wider public that your business is committed to safeguarding the environment. It shows that your organization is forward-thinking and proactive about its carbon footprint, which aligns well with the rising consumer demand for eco-friendly businesses.

Furthermore, adopting solar power can result in positive PR opportunities. Highlighting your investment in renewable energy can generate news coverage, improve your company’s brand image, and attract socially conscious consumers and potential employees who prioritize sustainability.

In addition to the financial returns, the reputational gains from installing solar panels in commercial properties can significantly impact your bottom line. Not only does it make your business more appealing to a broader audience, but it also sets you apart from competitors who have yet to make the switch to renewable energy.

Reducing Carbon Emissions

Beyond the financial benefits, it’s essential to note the environmental advantages of solar energy. By installing a solar system, your business can make a significant contribution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, notably carbon dioxide (CO2), which is the main driver of climate change.

Solar power is a clean, renewable form of energy that emits no greenhouse gases once the solar panels are operational. This is in stark contrast to traditional forms of energy production, such as coal and gas-fired power plants, which are major contributors to global CO2 emissions.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, a typical commercial property owner can reduce their carbon emissions by over 1,000 metric tons of CO2 annually by adopting solar power. This is equivalent to taking about 200 cars off the road each year.

Incorporating solar power into your business operations not only lowers your energy costs but also minimizes your carbon footprint. This environmental benefit isn’t just good for the planet; it’s also beneficial for your brand’s image and can even translate into financial rewards, given the growing consumer preference for sustainable businesses.

Conclusion

The benefits of installing large-scale solar systems in commercial properties are clear. From substantial reductions in electricity costs to enhanced business reputation, significant tax credits, and property value increase – the financial advantages are profound.

Moreover, with the potential to earn from Solar Renewable Energy Certificates and benefit from depreciation deductions, the case for solar power becomes even more compelling. Importantly, apart from the compelling return on investment, adopting solar energy plays a crucial role in reducing carbon emissions, demonstrating your commitment to sustainability, and aligning your business with future energy trends.

In this age of climate awareness, making the switch to solar power is not merely a wise business decision; it’s a necessary step towards a sustainable future. With the continually improving technology and favorable incentives, there’s never been a better time for businesses to invest in solar installations.