Thanks to technological advances in solar energy technology, the cost of solar panels in the UK has plummeted dramatically in recent years. That does not mean they are cheap, though. But are solar panels worth it?
The average cost of solar panels in the UK ranges between £5,000 and £10,000 (£350 and £500 per panel) in 2021. This vast difference in the average costs is due to many factors, the most important of which are the size and occupancy of your house. You will use more electricity if you have more people or amenities, so the solar panel costs will naturally go up. However, regardless of the size and occupancy of your house, you should expect to pay at least £5,000 for your solar installation.
£5,000 is not a small amount. Are solar panels worth it?
The answer is yes and it all has to do with how much you can save with solar power.
Solar power can lead to significant savings in two ways. First, it reduces the amount of electricity you will need to draw from the national grid, thus saving you money on your energy bills. A solar system could save you between £100 and £270 each year by lowering your energy usage. Second, you can earn money back through solar panel incentives in the UK, such as the Smart Export Guarantee or SEG (more on this later.)
How and when you use solar energy to power your home also has a bearing on how much money you can save. If you use your appliances during the day, you will get the most out of your investment; however, if you only use them after the sun has set, you will have to buy from the grid.
With all this in mind, how long would it take for a solar panel to pay for itself in the UK?
Since there are several variables at play, the answer can vary depending on your specific circumstances—most notably, whether or not you make use of the SEG payments.
If you do not make use of the SEG payments, your solar panel savings would only come from your reduced dependency on the national grid. As previously mentioned, these savings can range from £100 and £270. With an average solar installation cost of about £5,000, you may have to wait 18 to 50 years to break even.
You can significantly reduce these payback times if you make use of the SEG payments. When you combine the £100 in annual SEG payments with the average energy savings, it would only take you 13 to 25 years to break even.
As an increasing number of people in the UK are becoming environmentally conscious, investing in renewable energy could also make your house more appealing to potential buyers. However, bear in mind that the value of your home would not increase parallel to the amount you spent on solar installation. You cannot expect a £5,000 system to increase the value of your home by £5,000, but there will be an increase.
What’s the takeaway?
Going solar in the UK is absolutely worth it. Aside from the monetary benefits, it is vital for environmental protection and lowering your carbon footprint. To find out more contact us below.