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Millions of homeowners across this country have invested in solar panels. An effective way of reducing your energy bill and doing your bit for the environment, it’s one of the first steps towards creating a more sustainable home.
But there are several things that you should consider when investing in them, including:
1. What Type of Roof You Have
When you’re thinking about installing roof-top solar panels, you need to consider what type of roof you have. As different houses have different roofs, it’s good to know that not all of them are suitable for quick installation of the panels. However, that’s not to say that it’s impossible to fit them – as solar panels can be installed on almost every roof type.
It may just require more fitting costs or effort by the installer. Therefore, make sure that you enquire with different solar panel installation companies about costs and their estimated timeline before taking the leap and investing.
2. How Much They Cost
Fortunately, the cost of solar panels has decreased in the last few years, making them a more affordable option for homeowners. Although it used to cost in the region of £20,000 to have them installed in 2010, now, you can get them fitted for less than £10,000.
Although that might still sound expensive, solar panels can transform your energy bills and with the new Smart Export Guarantee that was launched at the start of this year, you’ll be able to make back the money that you spent on them in no time.
3. The Smart Export Guarantee
At the start of this year, the Smart Export Guarantee was released by the government. An incentive that replaced the Feed-in Tariff (FiT), it allows both homeowners and businesses who are installing new solar panels (and other renewable energy systems) to be compensated for any excess energy that’s been exported back to the grid.
As many solar energy companies will undeniably opt into the new tariff, it will create a competitive landscape with favourable prices for customers to choose from. You can easily Compare SEG Tariffs to discover the prices, along with the terms and conditions on the web.
4. What Planning Permission You Need
Although there is typically no planning permission required for homeowners to install solar panels, listed buildings will need Listed Building Consent from your local conservation officer. As this can be a lengthy process, you will have to wait for it to be approved before installing them – pushing your ideal timeframe back.
5. The Maintenance and Running Costs
Many people think that maintaining solar panels is a time-consuming process. But all you need to do is clear the leaves that settle on them a few times a year – or hire someone to take care of this for you.
Running costs are also low, as the inverter will typically need to be replaced after 10-15 years, and you’ll want to have it examined every 8 years or so. Most solar panels also come with a lengthy warranty of around 25 years – giving you the peace of mind that they can be fixed without charge if need be.
About Gina Caro
Gina is a content creator and award-winning blogger. Her aim is to help you live a more sustainable & simple life. Her blog covers zero waste, minimalism, wellbeing & thrift. She currently lives in Cornwall with her partner, two kids and Charles the dog.