on the Gold Coast
SAVE WITH SOLAR
Benefits of solar at your home
Monocrystalline and polycrystalline panels are both great in Australian conditions. The key thing you need to consider when buying solar panels is choosing a good brand that will last.
- If you have a relatively simple roof with no shading we would recommend installing a string inverter.
- If you have a complicated roof with many faces or multiple items that could cause shading throughout the day – we would recommend installing micro-inverters or power-optimisers.
- If your roof space is limited and you’d like to maximise the amount of power output of your system (up to an additional 10% more energy production) we’d recommend installing micro-inverters or power-optimisers.
- The more power your solar system generates, the greater the size of your rebate. So if you are located in sunny Queensland, you’ll receive a larger rebate than your Tasmanian counterparts.
- The more solar panels you install, the greater the size of your rebate.
- The rebate is being phased out over the next 12 years, by December 2030 this rebate will no longer exist!
- The advertised prices you see and quotes you receive will already have the rebate factored in.
- Your system must be designed and installed by a Clean Energy Council (CEC) accredited professional (we have done the due diligence and every solar company we recommend is CEC accredited)
- Your system must use CEC approved panels and inverters
Solar for Low Income Program – eligible participants can access a subsidy of up to 50% of the total cost of a solar system (capped at $2500) along with a three-year interest-free loan to pay off the difference.
Next Generation Energy Storage Program – this program offers $825 per kW (up to 30kW max) for 5000 ACT homes and businesses to install solar battery storage.
Empowering Homes Program – this program offers interest-free loans of up to $9,000 per battery system and up to $14,000 per solar + battery system for 300,000 NSW homes in a scheme to be rolled out over the next 10 years.
Solar for Low-Income Households (trial) – this program offers a free 3kW solar system to 3,000 NSW households that opt for a free solar system instead of the low-income household rebate. This scheme is currently in a trial phase and will only be available for people that live in the Central Coast, North Coast, Sydney-South, Illawarra-Shoalhaven and in the South Coast of NSW.
Home Battery Scheme – this program offers SA residents a subsidy of $500 per kWh or $600 per kWh (energy concession holders) up to a maximum of $6,000 on the cost of solar battery storage with a low-interest loan if needed. Up to 40,000 homes will be eligible to take part in this scheme.
Virtual Power Plant Scheme – this program is open for SA residents to register their interest. By creating a network of solar PV and battery systems working together to generate, store and feed energy back into the grid, a virtual power plant will be created. If the trial is successful on the 1,100 SA Housing Trust Households expected to be installed by October, 2019, the program could be rolled out to a further 49,000 properties.
Solar for Renters (trial) – rebates of up to $3,500 are available to landlords that install a solar system on their rental property. During the trial phase, the rental property must be located in the Bundaberg, Gladstone or Townsville local government areas. There are 1000 rebates available during the trial of this scheme.
Solar Panel Rebate – households that have not had solar power installed previously will have access to a 50 per cent rebate for a home solar power system up to a maximum rebate value of $1,888. This rebate has been hugely popular to date, with 56,000 rebates claimed by homeowners in 2019-2020.
Interest-free Loans for Solar PV – interest-free loans for solar PV systems will be available for owner-occupiers. This will allow Victorians to access the benefits of renewable energy at potentially no up-front cost depending on the choice of the solar system installed. Households will be required to pay the amount of the loan over four years.
Solar Hot Water Rebate – rebates of $1,000 are available for homeowners to replace an existing hot water system that is at least 3 years old with a solar hot water system. Homeowners can only access only one rebate under the solar homes package so the solar hot water rebate is a great option where solar panels might not be suitable or for households that already have solar panels installed.
Solar Battery Rebate – households will have access to a 50 per cent rebate for a solar home battery system up to a maximum rebate value of $4,838 in 2019-2020, which is expected to be the price of a typical 11 kWh solar home battery system. This rebate will be open to 10,000 households.
Solar for Rental Properties – a solar panel rebate up to $1,888 is available for rental properties, subject to program eligibility and a Solar Homes Landlord Rebate Agreement.
During the day, it’s typical for your solar power system to generate more power than is being used in your home. This means that if you have a grid-connected solar system, the energy is fed back into the grid and your energy retailer will pay you a fixed amount per kWh of energy that you send to them.
|State||Feed-in Tariff Range|
|NT||23.7c/kWh (1 for 1 FIT)|
However, solar systems installed on the North-East or North-West aspects of the roof will produce only slightly less power than North facing installations (see image below for the difference in energy production).
As solar panel prices and feed-in tariff rates have fallen, East-West facing installations are becoming increasingly popular because they start generating power earlier in the day and finish later in the afternoon – which follows most families’ energy usage patterns more closely. This means that even though the system is producing less energy overall, more of the energy is being self-consumed making East-West installations an attractive prospect.
If your roof faces south, your system would produce 28% less energy than an ideal North facing installation so we recommend only installing on the South Facing aspect of your roof as an absolute last resort.
This ‘future proofs’ you against continually rising electricity prices and will enable you to take full advantage of the generous government solar rebate as it stands. As a rough system sizing guide, you can compare the average daily power usage on your power bill to the average daily output of common system sizes we have calculated in the table below.
|System Size||Avg daily output||Return on Investment|
|2 kW||8.4 kWh||3 – 5 years|
|3 kW||12.6 kWh||3 – 5 years|
|4 kW||16.8 kWh||3 – 5 years|
|5 kW||21.0 kWh||3 – 5 years|
|6.6 kW||27.7 kWh||3 – 5 years|
|10 kW||42.0 kWh||3 – 5 years|
*Please note that the location used for above the daily output calculations is Brisbane, QLD – based on the Clean Energy Council GC Design Guidelines.
The major factors which will affect the price of a solar system are:
- government rebates and incentives
- contractor installation costs
- type and number of panels
- type and size of the inverter
- type of framing equipment and other system components
- roof type, height and accessibility
- any after-sales service agreements
|System Size||Estimated Price Range|
|3kW||$3300 – $4800|
|4kW||$4000 – $6200|
|5kW||$4500 – $7800|
|6.6kW||$5200 – $9500|
|10kW||$8200 – $13200|
Unfortunately, the finance companies behind these ‘no interest’ deals charge the solar installer a fee for the privilege (which is then passed onto you).
This fee can be anywhere up to 25% of the cost of the solar system so if you sign up for one of these easy, ‘no interest deals’ you’re essentially paying a higher interest rate than the worst possible credit card.
By carefully listening to our customer’s feedback over the past 5 years, we have come to realise that solar experts are not financing experts, and after extensive research and due diligence, we have proudly partnered with Community First Credit Union to help our customers explore low-rate solar finance options.
Our business has been built around transparency, fairness, customer service and accountability and we look for these same values in the companies that we recommend. For this reason, Community First Credit Union were the obvious choice as a finance partner as they align with our mission of driving Australia towards a sustainable future and because they believe in making the customer’s search for solar finance an informational and hassle-free experience.
If you notice newspaper and TV advertisements offering 6.6kW systems for $3990 (or less), we recommend avoiding these cheap solar deals like the plague. Australia’s largest solar installer in 2017 was infamous for selling cheap solar systems, and it was no surprise when they went into liquidation – leaving thousands of unsatisfied customers in their wake. The solar industry consensus is that the warranties these cheap systems come with, aren’t worth the paper that they are printed on.
There are thousands of horror stories online about faulty components, non-complaint installations and non-existent service and these are all a direct result of the dodgy, bottom of the market solar companies cutting corners in order to offer these ‘too good to be true’ prices.
There is so much information (and misinformation) out there about which solar panel brands are the best that we’ve decided to make your job easy and we’ve created the graphic below to help you easily compare entry-level and premium solar panel brands.
We’ve created the graphic below to give you the lay of the land and help you easily compare entry-level and premium inverter brands.