If you are thinking about installing a solar photovoltaic (PV) system on your home, and you did research before installing, you will find there is something solar tax credit exist, you can save money by apply it, you may be wondering if you can take advantage of the federal solar tax credit more than once.
The solar tax credit, also known as the investment tax credit (ITC) or the Residential Clean Energy Credit, is a federal incentive that allows you to deduct a percentage of the cost of your solar system from your federal income taxes.
The current rate of the credit is 30% for systems installed in 2020-2022, and 22% for systems installed in 2023. The credit expires starting in 2024 unless Congress renews it.(Source:www.energy.gov/eere/solar/homeowners-guide-federal-tax-credit-solar-photovoltaics)
The solar tax credit is not a one-time opportunity per taxpayer, but rather per project. This means that you can claim the credit more than once if you meet certain conditions.
Here are some scenarios in which you can claim the credit multiple times:
• You install a solar system on your primary residence and another one on your secondary residence. You can claim the credit for both systems as long as they are located in the United States and you own them. You cannot claim the credit for a system that you lease or purchase electricity from.(Source:www.irs.gov/credits-deductions/residential-clean-energy-credit)
• You install a solar system on your primary residence in one tax year and another one in a different tax year. You can claim the credit for both systems as long as they are placed in service during the eligible years. The credit must be claimed in the same tax year that your system was deemed operational by passing city inspection.(Source:www.solarreviews.com/blog/federal-solar-tax-credit)
• You purchase an interest in an off-site community solar project that generates electricity for your home. You can claim the credit for your share of the project as long as it is located in the United States and does not exceed your home’s electricity consumption.(Source:nationaltaxreports.com/federal-solar-energy-tax-credit)
How much you can claim on Solar Tax Credit?
The amount of the credit that you can claim depends on the cost and year of installation of your solar system.
For example, if you install a $20,000 solar system in 2020, you can claim a $6,000 credit (30% of $20,000).
If you install another $20,000 solar system in 2023, you can claim a $4,400 credit (22% of $20,000).
The total amount of credits that you can claim is not limited by any annual or lifetime cap.
Steps to Claim the Solar Tax Credit
To claim the solar tax credit, you need to fill out Form 5695 and attach it to your federal income tax return.
You also need to keep receipts and invoices of your solar expenses and proof of installation date and ownership.
You can use Form 1040 or Form 1040-SR to report your total credits and reduce your tax liability.
If your tax liability is lower than your credits, you can carry forward any excess amount to future tax years until it is used up or until the credit expires.(Source:www.consumeraffairs.com/solar-energy/how-the-federal-solar-tax-credit-works.html)
When should i claim the solar tax credit?
The solar tax credit is scheduled to expire at the end of 2023 unless Congress extends it or makes it permanent.
There have been several proposals to do so, such as the Renewable Energy Extension Act and the Growing Renewable Energy and Efficiency Now Act.
However, none of them have been passed into law yet.
Therefore, if you want to take advantage of this incentive, you should act soon before it is too late.
For more information about the solar tax credit, you can visit the following resources:
• Homeowner’s Guide to the Federal Tax Credit for Solar Photovoltaics www.energy.gov/sites/default/files/2021/02/f82/Guide to Federal Tax Credit for Residential Solar PV-2021.pdf from the U.S. Department of Energy
• Residential Clean Energy Credit www.irs.gov/credits-deductions/residential-clean-energy-credit from the Internal Revenue Service
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Does the solar tax credit affect state and local incentives?
A: No, the solar tax credit does not affect state and local incentives for solar energy. You can claim both the federal credit and any other incentives that are available in your area.
However, some state and local incentives may require you to reduce your eligible costs by the amount of the federal credit. You should check the rules and regulations of each incentive program before applying.
Q: Does the solar tax credit apply to battery storage?
A: Yes, the solar tax credit also applies to battery storage systems that are charged by solar energy. However, there are some conditions that you need to meet to qualify for the credit. F
or example, your battery system must have a capacity of at least 3 kWh, must be installed after January 1, 2023, and must be used primarily for your home’s electricity needs. (Source:www.cnet.com/home/energy-and-utilities/solar-tax-credits/)
Q: What are the signs of a qualified solar system?
A: A qualified solar system is one that meets the following criteria:
• It uses solar photovoltaic panels or cells to generate electricity for your home.
• It is new or being used for the first time. You cannot claim the credit for a used or refurbished system.
• It is owned by you or financed by a loan that you are responsible for repaying. You cannot claim the credit for a leased system or a power purchase agreement.
• It is located at your primary or secondary residence in the United States or at an off-site community solar project that credits your home’s electricity consumption.
• It is placed in service during an eligible year (2020-2023). The system is considered placed in service when it passes city inspection and is ready to use.