January 2023 Australian Solar Systems Interest Index

SolarQuotes auSSII report - January 2023

Australians are usually more focused on upcoming celebrations in December, but there was still plenty of interest in installing solar panels during the final month of 2022.

Solar Power System Sizes

Where a choice was made between 3-5 kW, 5-10 kW, 10-15 kW, 15-20 kW, 20+ kW capacities and “Fill Roof” options presented on the SolarQuotes quoting form, 5-10kW was the clear favourite again in December, accounting for 77% of selections – the same as in November.

Around 12% were keen to fill their roof with solar panels, whatever capacity that may work out to be.

Solar system size choice - December 2022 results

If you’re tussling with deciding on system capacity, read SQ Founder Finn’s advice on solar power system sizing.

Intended Timeframe To Buy

Again in December, 27% of solar buyers were ready to purchase a system immediately. The last couple of months have seen sustained elevated interest in an immediate purchase. Another 27% were wanting to buy a solar power system within 4 weeks; down on November’s 31% and 32% in October.

Timeframe for buying solar - December 2022 results

The recent increased enthusiasm for getting a system right now is likely the result of a couple of things – power bill increases hitting home and a scheduled solar rebate reduction on the 1st of January. But while the subsidy may not be as much as it was, it’s still very generous. Discover how much you can save with Australia’s solar rebate in 2023.

Price And Quality Considerations

End of year expenses didn’t seem to have much effect on the proportion of Australians wanting a high-end (most expensive) solar system; with just over 11% selecting this option in December compared to just under 12% in November. 81% were interested in a PV package offering a good balance of price and quality (81% in November) and around 8% a good budget system.

System price and quality graph  - December 2022 results

So how much do systems cost? You can find out current general pricing ranges on SQ’s solar panel costs page or see what Australians have been paying historically using the Solar Price Index, which enables you to drill down to specific states and territories and a whole lot more.

Cash Or Finance?

Approached carefully (and this includes “Buy Now, Pay Later” arrangements), solar finance can be a good way to get a system installed if you don’t have the up-front cash available.

Last month, just under 9% of Australians using the SQ service indicated they wanted finance, same as in November. A little more than 41% were cash-only buyers and 50% wanted to review information on options for both.

Cash vs. Finance solar purchase  - December 2022 results

Module Level Power Electronics

Panel Level Optimisation (PLO), also referred to as Module Level Power Electronics (MLPE), such as optimisers and microinverters are small electronic devices attached to each solar panel. You can learn more about the benefits of microinverters here – but note that they will add to the cost of a system.

In December, around 17% of prospective solar buyers wanted to learn more about PLO and MLPE options; same as December.

Microinverter and solar panel optimisers - December 2022 results

Advanced Solar Monitoring Option

This is an option certainly worth getting if you can – advanced solar monitoring, aka consumption monitoring. It will provide much more useful information than what most solar inverters will provide.

Last month, a little more than 34% of quote requests selected this option. This figure has bounced between 34% and 36% for at least the last few months.

Consumption monitoring - December 2022

Battery Ready Solar

Thanks to AC or DC coupling options, a home battery can be retrofitted to just about any existing solar system, regardless of age. But the complexity (and cost) can vary, so it’s good to let a potential installer know at the design stage you’re thinking about battery storage in the future.

Just under 5% noted a battery-ready preference in December 2022, same as in November.

Battery ready systems interest graph - December 2022 results

Solar Panels + Battery Installation

Many Australians aren’t thinking about buying a home battery in the future; but instead right now. In December, 22% indicated they wanted battery storage as part of their solar energy installation.

Solar and battery system installation - December 2022 results

A solar battery continues to be a big investment, so careful consideration is needed before signing the dotted line  – learn about the top mistakes home battery buyers make.

Intended Main Battery Use

The main reason noted for buying a battery were:

  • Backup: 7%
  • Minimising grid electricity use: 33%
  • Both purposes: 60%

Intended battery use - December 2022 results

Electricity Bills Before Solar Panels

In terms of electricity bills before a solar installation and where costs were known, 47% reported paying $500 to $1,000 a quarter on average for mains grid power compared to 49% in November and October. Just over 11% were being hit with power bills of more than $1,000 a quarter.

Electricity bills before solar installation - December 2022 results

Just in terms of further electricity price rises, the Albanese Government unveiled its Energy Price Relief Plan in December. But it isn’t expected to reduce electricity prices;  just reduce the amount they would otherwise increase by. So, now as ever, it’s a great time to go solar.

About auSSII Results

Thousands of Australians request quotes from SolarQuotes’ network of carefully pre-vetted installers each month, and the auSSII is compiled from information they provide.

Australians Eager For Quality Solar

If your business has a strong focus on providing quality installations and reasonable prices, then SolarQuotes can connect you to eager Australian buyers. Learn more about acquiring sales leads via SolarQuotes.

About Michael Bloch

Michael caught the solar power bug after purchasing components to cobble together a small off-grid PV system in 2008. He's been reporting on Australian and international solar energy news ever since.

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