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Should I buy solar panels now or wait until they are cheaper?

Prices will continue to come down over time. In the US, the federal tax credit is set to expire at the end of 2016, which gives you effectively a 30% rebate if you owe enough income taxes at the end of the year. It is very unlikely that costs will drop 30% in that time frame given how much they have come down recently.

So, my advice to folks asking is to buy now. You have to also think about it this way – delaying purchasing means you are also delaying the savings on your utility bill.

A 5kW system can easily generate 7500 kWh in a year, which at a rate of $0.13/kWh, saves you nearly $1000 a year. In California, Hawaii, New Jersey, New York, etc, the savings will be significantly more – perhaps 50-100% more. So, you need to ask yourself – are prices going to drop more or less than $1000 a year (or whatever my annual savings is) on this system? If you think it is less, then it definitely makes sense to buy now. I think it’s going to be less for the next few years, particularly if/when the federal tax credit expires.

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