Solar Rebate Ending?

dont-panic

Have you heard the news?  The solar rebate is ending!  It’s all over the internet.  Or at least all over the parts of the internet that run ads from shonky solar companies.  According to them, if you don’t rush out right now to get rooftop solar installed before the first of January you’ll end up paying a fortune for it!  If you don’t buy now, the price of a typical 5 kilowatt rooftop solar system will rise by…

…just a second… let me work it out…

Around $263 which is about a 4% increase.

If you get a 3 kilowatt system it will come to around an extra $158 which is about a 3% increase.

Hmm…  Looking at those figures, I’m starting to think that maybe there isn’t a need to run out and buy solar in some kind of mad rush before the end of the year.

Now that I think about it, I’m actually pretty sure the dodgy companies telling people they need to buy solar now because the solar rebate is ending aren’t telling the truth.  In fact, I’d go as far as saying they are full of an unpleasant substance that stinks.  This substance is not something you want to see in public, to do it in someone’s face is horrible, and you certainly don’t want to swallow it.

It’s called lies.  These people are liars.

 

While the solar rebate will be slightly reduced, it is not ending.  Those who are trying to get you to believe you have to install now are making a mountain out of a molehill or a melanoma out of a freckle.

I don’t think many of them even intend to install systems before the end of the year.  They just want people to sign up now and they’ll get around to actually doing the installations in a couple of months.  They’ll tell people they have locked in a low rate, but that’s a load of nonsense.  Signing up now and installing next year doesn’t somehow magically lower the cost.

I don’t recommend dealing with them because they are not people who can be trusted.  A person who has no problem lying to your face probably has no problem installing a shoddy system, or charging you too much, or quite possibly both.

The Solar Rebate Is Ending – In 14 Years

While the solar rebate1 is ending, it’s not actually going to finish ending for another 14 years.  What we are getting on the first of January is a one fifteenth cut in the renewable energy certificates that reduce the total cost of rooftop solar by about one half to two-thirds.

If you’d like me to do the maths for you, that’s about 4%.

And if you’d like the details, I wrote all about it here six months ago.

Are High Solar Feed-In Tariffs Ending?

A couple of high solar feed-in tariffs, a 60 cent one in NSW and a 25 cent one in Victoria, are ending on December 31st.  Some of the dodgy advertising relates to this, but there is nothing that can be done about it.  Installing a new solar system before the end of the year won’t stop a high feed-in tariff from ending.  You will be free to expand your solar capacity without losing it, but there is no need to get it done before the end of the year.

You Are Probably Better Off Waiting

The 31st of December is only one month and one day away.  And unlike the situation that occurred when some high feed-in tariffs were ending, it’s not enough to just order a system, it actually has to be installed by the end of the year.  So there’s not a lot of time to get it done.

Unless a hell of a lot more people read this article than I expect, there will be plenty of people trying to get systems installed before New Year’s Day because they’ve been conned by misleading advertising and think they will have to pay thousands extra if they wait instead of maybe $263 extra.  But they may not end up saving anything.

If people are making installers work overtime, on weekends, and in all sorts of miserable weather, then they are going to get cranky and start charging extra.  It’s the law of supply and demand.  If you demand installers supply you with a new system before the end of the year they are going to lay down the law and charge you more money than they would otherwise.  As a result, you may not save anything by getting a system installed this month.

I’m not saying dawdle, because every month you spend without rooftop solar is a month you are paying more for electricity than you have to.  But I am saying that if you take your time, get a few quotes, decide on a system that will meet your needs, and then have it installed by someone you trust, you stand to gain a lot more than you might lose.

The Cost Of Solar Will Continue To Fall

The cost of solar panels has fallen considerably this year and will continue to fall.  Some analysts think they could drop by another 10 cents a watt.  And that’s not Australian cents but shiny American cents with bald eagles and golden Trump Towers stamped on them.

I don’t know if solar panels will fall by that much next year, but I do know it will only take a drop of around 6 Australian cents to eliminate the approximately 4% increase in price that will result from the end of year reduction in the solar rebate.

America's new President

“My fellow Americans… The cut to the Solar Rebate will be YUUUGE!!! Install now before it’s too late! I’m building a wall around high prices!”

Just to be clear, I’m not saying wait to install solar.  Between currency fluctuations and an Oompa Loompa becoming President of the United States in less than two months, it’s not possible to be certain solar prices will fall.  But we can be certain putting solar on your roof will start saving you money immediately.

I am saying you probably aren’t going to lose anything if you don’t get it done this year.  You can think about what you want now and get it installed early next year and I very much doubt you will be worse off than if you rush to get it done before New Year’s Day.

 

Footnotes

  1. Yes, it’s not really a rebate.  No, I don’t really care.  The time to care was before the term got bludgeoned into the Australian lexicon by every cowboy and his magic talking dog. And what’s the point in worrying about it anyway?  In 14 years it will go away.
About Ronald Brakels

Many years ago now, Ronald Brakels was born in Toowoomba. He first rose to international prominence when his township took up a collection to send him to Japan, which was the furthest they could manage with the money they raised. He became passionately interested in environmental matters upon his return to Australia when the local Mayor met him at the airport and explained it was far too dangerous for him to return to Toowoomba on account of climate change and mutant attack goats. Ronald then moved to a property in the Adelaide Hills where he now lives with his horse, Tonto 23.

Comments

  1. We paid $7,500 and the govt. contributed $6,000 to the solar supplier; (rip-off); we get 44 cents rebate. However, it seems each year, our electricity useage goes down, yet our electricity bill has doubled, so less rebate. We thought the rebate would pay for the $7,500. outlaid. Qld. residents.

  2. Hi,

    I am told today that the solar rebate will end in 2 years’ time and the news is in the internet somewhere. Is this just another lie from the solar company in a bid to rush the customers to install?

    Thanks for clarifying and updating me.

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