That's the question many homeowners are asking themselves lately. With the cost of solar panels dropping every year, it's becoming more and more affordable for homeowners to go solar.
This blog post will look at the pros and cons of solar panels in 2023 and help you decide if they're right for you.
Are Solar Panels a Good Investment in 2023?
The short answer is: it depends. Solar panels are a good investment for some homeowners and not a good investment for others. In general, solar panels make the most sense if you have to pay a lot for your electricity, have plenty of daylight-exposed roof space, and plan to stay in your home for several years.
Solar panels can increase the value of your home.
First things first, in the same way that adding an extension or getting a new kitchen makes your house worth more, solar panels immediately add value to your home. According to research by Solar Energy UK, “Analysis of more than five million property sales shows that installing PV on a typical home could increase its value by £1,891—£2,722. Solar property commands a price premium of c.0.9%—2%. This means that the sale price of a home can be increased by half the cost of installing a PV system itself.”
Of course, your house value depends on lots of things. But if you're thinking of selling in the next few years, installing solar panels could be a good way to get a higher price.
Solar Panels Save You Money on Bills
With the cost of energy at an all-time high and the price cap having increased by £3,000 per year since 2021/2022 winter, saving money on your electricity bills has never been more important. Although solar PV won’t drastically reduce your bills, the savings can certainly help.
Solar panels save you money on your electricity bill: when you use solar energy, you're not using energy from the grid that you would have to pay for. In most cases, the savings may seem small on a short-term basis, but over time, those savings add up. And if you live in an area with high electricity prices, your savings could be even greater.
Plus, there are other ways to maximise your solar savings. For example, you can install a battery to store your solar panels' energy during the day and use it at night.
You Can Earn Money from Unused Solar Energy
If your solar panels produce more energy than you need, you can sell that energy back to the grid. Previously, this was done through the Feed-in-Tariff, but now it's done through the Smart Export Guarantee or SEG. With the SEG, you can get paid for every unit of electricity you export back to the grid, which is measured by a smart meter.
While the price of energy does fluctuate, rates of 5 or 6p per kWh are typical. At a 5-6p rate, homeowners report earning somewhere around £150-200 per year for no extra effort. If you're thinking of your solar panels as an investment for the future, that's a couple of hundred pounds a year, adding up to thousands over the normal lifespan of a solar panel system.
The Cost of Solar Panels Is Dropping Every Year
As more and more research is done on the topic of efficient solar technology, it costs less and less to make the photovoltaic cells (PV cells) that panels are made from. Besides that, with solar becoming more popular, both manufacturers and installers have to lower their prices because of competition.
So, if you're thinking about investing in solar panels, now is a good time to do it!
Group Buying Can Help You Save
Perhaps the biggest barrier to going solar is the upfront cost. Solar panels are not cheap, and even with the cost dropping every year, they're still a big investment. When calculating any kind of investment for the future, you have to balance upfront cost with its return over time, which is arguably the biggest reason why relatively few people have solar panels installed. But there are ways to make them more affordable.
For example, group-buying schemes like Solar Together bring together people in communities who want to go solar and allow installers to buy in bulk. By pooling resources, group members can save on the cost of going solar. And because more people go solar in their community, there's a bigger impact on reducing carbon emissions.
How Long Until Solar Panels Pay for Themselves?
The average solar panel system will pay for itself in about ten to twenty years. This is based on the cost of installation, electricity rates, how much electricity your panels produce, how much of this power you're able to use yourself and how much you sell back to the grid.
But there are a lot of variables that go into this calculation. The cost of installation can vary depending on the size and type of system you get and who you have install it; besides that, you have to consider how much electricity rates rise in the short, medium and long term. All in all, solar makes a wise investment in more ways than one.
The Cons of Solar Panels in 2023
Now that we've looked at some of the pros of solar panels, let's take a look at some of the cons.
The biggest con of solar panels is that they require a large upfront investment. Even when group buying, you won't make back your initial investment quickly. You have to take the long view, no matter how you have your solar panels installed.
All solar panels are guaranteed to last 25 years, however, most will last longer than that with decent output. Some may even last between 40-50 years! You have to factor into your calculation of costs and savings. While 25 years is more than enough time to save more than you spend on solar, you may have to replace them at some point, albeit in the distant future.
Other than that, solar panels have come a long way in just a few decades. They are more efficient than ever before, and with the rising cost of electricity, there's never been a better time to go green with solar.
Contact Solar Together for Solar Panels UK
If you're interested in installing solar panels on your home, don't hesitate to contact Solar Together today.
Solar Together is a group-buying scheme that makes solar panels and batteries more accessible and more affordable for everyone. Group buying is a great way to install solar panels on your property. By pooling our resources together, everyone can get a discount, like if you were buying wholesale! Even better, we vet suppliers for the quality of their service so that you don't have to. Beyond that, we even offer optional add-ons like battery storage, EV charge point installation, and insurance-backed guarantees for customer protection.
We understand why that might sound too good to be true. So, why not learn more through our Blog?