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Massachusetts just passed a new net metering bill. Let’s celebrate!

Massachusetts is the number 1 state for solar, according to our Annual State Solar Power Rankings report.

But on April 11, 2016, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed a bill into law that may see his state take back sole possession of 1st place (we’re sure that’s why he did it, too). The bill saved net metering in the state, nearly doubling the previous cap of 4% by adding another 3% of total capacity for solar.

That’s great news for solar companies in the state, where the previous cap would have effectively ended the rapid expansion of solar. And it’s also great news for homeowners, both because having a robust commercial and industrial-scale solar industry means they benefit from economies of scale and competition, and because they escaped the bill’s decrease in payments for electricity produced by solar. Under the new law, homeowners will continue to receive the retail rate for every kilowatt-hour their systems produce.

Solar makes you money by helping you avoid the cost of electricity; both when your panels are pumping out the kilowatts, and when you’re drawing electricity from the grid. That’s the “net” in net metering. Johnny Cochran might explain net metering by saying “whatever your panels produced is the amount by which your bill is reduced.” That’s why this net metering expansion is so important.

In other great solar news, owners of small systems still get to take advantage of Massachusetts’s SREC program, which results in thousands of dollars of payments to solar owners over the lifespans of their systems.

The financial picture for residential solar in Massachusetts

At this point, it’s worth reiterating how the economics of solar plays out for homeowners in the Bay State. Check out our handy-dandy infographic:

Those SRECs and your electric bill savings quickly wipe out the cost of your initial investment, paying you back in just 4 short years. After that it’s all profit—about $50,000 of it over the 25-year warranty your panels carry. That’s HUGE. Like best-in-the-nation huge.

As always, the best way to take advantage of these amazing financial opportunities is to connect with a solar expert in your area and get more information about net metering and the incentives available in your area.

Last modified: March 4, 2019

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