If (like me) you don’t happen to have a fully functioning time machine, now will continue to be the best time to go solar: you can’t go back to the past and go solar then anymore. Rebates were higher 2 years ago or even 10 years ago, so you could have gotten more of your solar system paid for by someone else. But, guess what? Solar panels were more expensive then too, so those two facts more or less cancel each other out. If you had gone solar years ago, you likely would have paid more over all for your system, but you also would have been saving on your electric bills in the meantime. In any case, that option is no longer available (unless you get that time machine working).
So, I guess the reason why it seems like the best time to go solar has to be now, is that rebates are continuing to be reduced on a semi-regular – though somewhat unpredictable – basis. Solar panel prices have stopped their steep price decline, and if you wait too long the 30% Federal ITC (solar investment tax credit) will expire at the end of next year.
Solar Energy Incentives
Why are all of these incentives going down, when everything we know about the state of the world is telling us that we need more solar energy, not less? Well, part of the reason is explained by basic human nature: we vacillate between crisis and complacency. So unless something appears to be on fire, we tend to order another beer. If rebates were increasing, we’d just wait to go solar until it was free (wait a minute, haven’t I been seeing TV commercials telling me that it is free?). And if incentives never changed, we’d feel no sense of urgency to act.