Get Ready For Victoria’s Solar Power Rebate .. Err, Subsidy – Round Two

Solar Victoria - rebate

The Victorian Government is warming up its Solar Homes Package engine – and households in Victoria wanting to take advantage of the generous rebate (now a subsidy) should do too.

The initiative kicks off again from July 1, offering up to $2,2251 to assist with the purchase of a solar power system, or 50% of the system price (whichever is lowest).

Unlike the first phase of the program, from July 1 it won’t be a rebate for solar PV but a subsidy2 that will come off the up-front cost of a system and the application process will occur via a new online portal.

According to a statement released yesterday, in 2019/20 the program will provide financial support for:

  • 40,000 rooftop solar systems on homes and community-owned housing
  • 2,000 solar power systems on rental properties
  • 6,000 solar hot water systems
  • 1,000 battery systems for households with solar panels already installed

Some points to note:

  • The Victorian Government will be releasing a set number of home solar rebates each month3, so it’s quite possible it will be oversubscribed in the first month/s.
  • The 1,000 battery rebates will only be available in “targeted areas” – more on this below.
  • You can still also get the federal “solar rebate“.

The Next PV Rush Begins

Given the previous popularity of the Solar Homes Package, if you’re a home owner who is very eager to get a solar power system installed reasonably soon, it’s time to find out more about the rebate/subsidy, do some research on systems, check out installer reviews and get quotes now in preparation for July 1.

IMPORTANT: if you are requested by a company to provide a deposit or sign a contract, Solar Victoria has previously advised you should be sure any contract is very clear on the issue of refunds/release if for some reason you are deemed ineligible for the program. It’s also very important that you do not proceed with installation until you have your eligibility number from Solar Victoria. If you install before doing so, you won’t get the rebate/subsidy.

Interest-Free Loans For Solar Panels

A new interest-free loan of up to $2,225, repaid over 4 years, will also be available for solar power systems. So, if the price of a system is less than $4,450 – which is around the cost of a good quality 4kW-5kW installation – there will be no up-front cost (with the rebate included). The loan option will appear as part of the application process if an applicant is deemed eligible. Learn more here.

Solar Battery Rebate

The battery rebate will be up to $4,838 and targeted towards growth areas with high solar installation rates. Here’s the current list of eligible postcodes taken from the Solar Victoria website – more postcodes may become eligible over time:

Eligible postcodes
3024 3038 3048
3059 3064 3106
3212 3217 3218
3226 3228 3351
3377 3467 3752
3754 3936 3939
3941 3942 3943
3944 3977 3978

The battery rebate will not be available to those who have already received a Solar Homes Package rebate. More information on the battery rebate can be viewed here.

Installers, Take Note

For installers, Solar Victoria has published a new Notice to Market that should be carefully reviewed as it details all the requirements for businesses wishing to participate in the scheme – which will be pretty much every PV installer in Victoria. Among the changes are new requirements for inverters and all businesses must be CEC Approved Solar Retailers by November 1 this year (major retailers in the top 150 will need to be ASRs by July 1). All installers/retailers are required to register in the Solar Victoria Portal before July 1 in order to continue as a supplier under the program.

Footnotes

  1. According to The Age, the maximum rebate available will be reduced to $1,888 from January 1, and to $1,850 for the 2020-21 financial year
  2. Regardless, the term “rebate” is still being used by the Victorian Government.
  3. The Age says around 3,000 a month
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.

Comments

  1. When you say the price of a good quality 4 to 5 kW system is around $4,450 what brands of equipment etc are you referring to? As a solar retailer I’d have thought that was an entry level price using entry level equipment at best. Your own ROI calculator has a figure of $6,000 when you specify a 4 kW system and $7,000 when you punch in a 5kW system.

    One thing is for sure, we will all have to charge extra due to this subsidy/rebate given we’ll have to do most of the paperwork, all of the follow up, carry the amount of the subsidy in our cash flow and maintain and pay for our Approved Retailer status and other compliance. I can also guarantee the equipment and installer labour prices will increase and the STC prices will decrease as demand increases. So how much of the subsidy will people receive in real terms? $1,200? $1,000? Not much considering all the cost to the taxpayers and the delays to those wanting solar.

    • You are absolutely right with $1200 figure savings for the end user.But as the Residential installs will be capped at $40k every year pluS say another 10k for ppl who are not eligible for Solar Victoria rebate, so in next 10 years we now are capped to only $50k residential installations as everybody will wait for these small savings for months to get their application through in that tightly packed 3333 subsidies every month .Doing this they are still unknowingly paying for their bills in the meanwhile.
      if they wait 6 months and that is extra $600-$1000 paid on their bills to get installed and eligible for this small savings which in turn will reduce to $1885 from Jan 1.

      I expect those150 big sized retailers will at least do 2 resi installs every single working day ,300 per day will only last 16 days hence that 3333 monthly number is so much small for every installer to get work for the whole month (As per CEC accreditation almost 1500 CEC installers in Victoria ) what about all other small retailers how much jobs they can install …don’t know what the Victorian residential solar industry will achieve from this .

  2. Jack hart says

    I have a 3.3klw system on my roof which I had installed in 2008. With a 48c a unit pay back to the grid, that’s stopping soon ,so l look at getting a new system put in 6.6 klw system battery ready, I had quotes from $3999 to $5999 and a few taking the old system away,
    I went to my first installer to ask for his system and he told me that under $6000 it’s all real old stock , he quoted $9000 ouch I said , it’s a new LG 400 wat pannals plus inverter,
    He then advised me ,I was under a contract for 15 yrs with my first system , and if I upgrade before then I get ON REBATE on the new system , every installer in WA got a form from the energy council , but he was the only one to tell me,
    I went back to the other quotes and ask them if it’s true , they didn’t no and said they get back to me , one did and said you get the discount , can you put any more light on this matter . I live in PERTH Wa

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