Ohio residential solar energy incentives

Property improvement program – Hamilton County:

-This loan program offers residents in Hamilton County the option to borrow money to make energy efficiency improvements to their homes.
-Loans have a 3% interest rate and a five year payback period.
-Loan amounts vary but will not exceed $50,000.

Green Energy Ohio solar thermal rebate program:

-This rebate program offers rebates to home owners who purchase and install solar water heating systems.
-Rebate amounts are $30 per kBtu/day. This is calculated based upon the amount of projected energy output shown by the solar collectors.
-The maximum incentive amount is $2,400 per applicant.
-Funding for this program is provided by The Sierra Club.

Property tax abatement for green buildings – Cincinnati:

-This is a 100% property tax abatement provided for LEED certified residential and commercial buildings.
-There is a maximum improved market value of $500,000 for residential buildings unless the building is LEED platinum certified, in which case there is no limitation.
Special energy improvements districts:
-This is property tax financing for property owners who wish to borrow money to pay for energy improvements.
-This financing offers a low interest, 25 year loan.
-The loans are repaid through an increased property tax assessment over a period of years.

Residential solar PV energy incentive – Advanced energy program grants:

-These grants are offered by the Ohio Energy Office to customers of participating utilities who install grid tied solar photovoltaic systems with an output of at least 2 kilowatts.
-The incentive is $3.00/watt capacity of the installed system. The maximum incentive is $25,000.
-The system must be installed and must pass a final inspection review before the grant funds are disbursed.

Utility rebate programs:

-Ohio has a few different rebate programs provided by provided by municipal cities and utility companies.
-Most of the rebate programs are for geothermal heat pumps and water heaters.
-Rebates are given as a one time set amount for the total cost. Rebate amounts vary.

Residential renewable energy tax credit:

-This personal tax credit allows the taxpayer to claim a credit of 30% of expenditures including labor costs and installation of qualified residential solar-electric systems, solar water heating systems or fuel cells. Small wind-energy systems and geothermal heat pumps can also be accredited for.
-Solar-electric systems and solar water heaters have a maximum incentive of $2,000 if placed in service before 2009. There is no maximum incentive for systems placed after 2008.
-The excess amount of the federal tax credit may be carried forward to the next taxable year if it exceeds tax liability.
-This can be carried forward until 2016, but after that, it is unknown if the unused credit will be able to be forwarded.

Residential energy conservation subsidy exclusion:

-This is a personal exemption of 100% of energy conservation subsidies provided by public utilities.
-The value of a purchase or installation of any energy conservation measure by a customer such as solar water heat, solar space heat or photovoltaics will not be included in the customer’s gross income.
-Customers of an electric utility company, who participate in the utility’s energy conservation program, may receive a rate reduction of electricity furnished or a nonrefundable credit against the purchase price of the electricity on each monthly electric bill.

Energy-efficient mortgages:

-This is a federal loan program where homeowners can use EEM (energy-efficient mortgages) to finance renewable energy technologies in a home.

Net metering:

-Net metering is available to residents of Ohio who have facilities that generate electricity through solar, wind, methane, biomass, hydropower or geothermal systems.
- Systems must be intended primarily to offset all or part of a customer's electricity requirements and have the capability to record the flow of electricity in each direction.
-The power produced by the renewable energy system is used to offset the kilowatt hours consumed each month.
-At the end of a 12 month period, customers may request refunds of their accumulated net excess generation.