Victoria’s Solar Homes Rebate Maxing Out – But Don’t Panic

Solar Victoria rebates

It was announced yesterday Solar Victoria will accept a final 2,000 applications for the Solar Homes Package rebate this financial year – but it will restart on July 1.

UPDATE April 12: Solar Victoria announced early this morning the program for 2018-19 is now fully subscribed. Solar Victoria says all eligibility and rebate applications lodged before applications closed will continue to be processed.

Please be aware that you must have your VIC rebate approved before your solar power system is installed – otherwise you will not get the rebate. You cannot install solar and apply for the rebate afterwards.

Up to July 1, Victorians using our quoting system will see the following message when requesting quotes:

Victoria solar quotes

The scheme has been a rip-roaring success in terms of uptake since it was launched last August. The Victorian Government says 30,000 households across the state have “embraced” the incentive, which in addition to Australia’s existing major solar subsidy offers a rebate up to a value of $2,225 or 50% of the price of a solar power system.

Further information : Victoria’s Solar Homes Rebate Explained.

The first phase of the program was funded for around 24,000 eligible Victorian households from 19 August 2018 to 30 June 2019. However, from July 1 the program gets bigger, aiming to put solar panels on the rooftops of 650,000 households across the state. Also from July, the scheme will be accompanied by an interest-free loan option to cover the unsubsidised portion of a system. Additionally, there will be coverage for 50,000 rental properties and 10,000 solar batteries.

There’s been no indication as yet if the rebate level will change from July 1 and Solar Victoria points out rebates for solar hot water are continuing uninterrupted.

“For people who are still considering installing solar, now is the time to do your research,” said Minister for Solar Homes Lily D’Ambrosio. “Talk to a participating solar retailer who can help you choose a system which is right for you, so you’re ready to go on 1 July.”

… or, you could take a step prior to that and check out our Solar 101 Guide, or Finn’s book, The Good Solar Guide, which is also free to read online. That way you’ll go into those discussions armed with valuable knowledge.

Impact On Installers – From Flat Out To Full Stop?

Many Victorian installers have been inundated with work as a result of the Solar Homes Package, so the temporary end to the rebate may provide them with some relief as they get caught up.

Others may find themselves scrabbling around for jobs once the final 2,000 applications are lodged as many solar buyers who have missed out on this phase of the rebate will understandably hold off until July 1 – a wait of 2.5 months.

The stop/start/change in rebates and incentives in Australia gave rise to the term, “solar coaster” – a phenomenon veteran installers will be well acquainted with.

Other Recent Solar Homes Package Changes

One of the other recent changes to the program was an announcement last week that smart inverters will be mandatory for solar power systems installed from the beginning of July under the program. We explain the impact of the change and what Solar Victoria considers a “smart inverter” here.

A bigger change with more far-reaching consequences is the Clean Energy Council’s Approved Solar Retailer scheme will effectively become mandatory in the state. From the beginning of July, major solar retailers must sign up to Code if they wish to continue installing systems under the Solar Homes program. All other retailers wanting to install Victorian Government subsidised systems (and those will make up most installations) will have until November 1 to become signatories to the Code.

Both SQ’s Finn (written when he heard rumours prior to the announcement) and Ronald have argued why this is a very bad move.

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.


  1. Robert Wright says

    If.i have been accepted for the rebate and installer cannot install until mid July can I still get the interest free loan.

  2. robert zirafi says

    like to no more about the rebate

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